Successful decision making in small firms requires the availability of financial information and its deployment in a variety of financial management techniques. This prescriptive dictate and the techniques and practices it advocates have developed from, and are supported by, a framework of assumptions derived from mainstream neoclassical economics. Substantial relaxation of these assumptions is often necessary to provide plausible explanations for many observed practices such as the irregular use of financial information in small firm decision contexts. Rather than seeking to justify these departures within the extant framework, understanding may be better accommodated by adopting a different perspective. Concerned primarily with the role of entrepreneurs in the market process, the Austrian school of economic thought appears well placed to provide an appropriate framework for the study of small firms. Financial information in this alternative framework is likely to have a different, less prescriptive, role in decision making.

JEL Codes

L25, G32, M13


Information, Decision-making, Small Firm