Chuck Eesley’s research focuses on the influence of the external environment on entrepreneurship. Specifically, he has sought to be a leader in investigating the types of environments that encourage the founding of high growth, technology-based firms. Although he builds on previous work that focuses on individual characteristics, network ties, and strategy, his major contribution is to demonstrate that institutions matter. He has broken new ground in showing that effective institutional change influences who begins firms, not just how many firms are begun. He has repeatedly studied entrepreneurship in a single country (China, Chile, Japan, and the U.S.) before and after a major institutional change. His work is divided into three streams: (1) formal institutions (policies and regulations), (2) university and industry environments, and (3) informal institutions (social movements).