As usual, when preparing a new edition, we have made many small changes to
improve clarity of exposition and to update the text both for recent economics
events and for relevant advances in the literature. But this time we have focused on one
particular addition that will, so far as we have been able to find out, differentiate this book
from all other introductory texts.
We have included in the eleventh edition a substantial discussion of the role of the entrepreneurs
and of the microtheory of their activities, their pricing and their earnings, and
the implications for economic growth. Several studies of the place of the entrepreneur in
economics textbooks (including earlier editions of this one) have all reached the same conclusion:
that entrepreneurs are either completely invisible or are virtually so. Indeed, in a
substantial set of the textbooks the word entrepreneur does not even appear in the index.
Now, this omission should appear strange because entrepreneurs are often classified as
one of the four factors of production—but the only one to which no chapter is devoted.
More than that, it seems universally recognized by economists that economic growth is the
prime contributor to the general welfare and that more than 80 percent of the current income
of the average American was contributed by growth in the past century alone. Moreover,
it is clear that, even though entrepreneurs did not produce this growth by themselves,
much if not most of this historically unprecedented achievement would not have occurred
without them. Yet, in the textbooks, they have been the invisible men and women.
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