Imagination in Entrepreneurship: An Inspiration from Heidegger

Usman Talat (University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 7AL, England Tel: +44 (0)24 7652 3523 Fax: +44 (0)24 7646 1606 Email:
Kirk Chang (1. Salford Business School, University of Salford, The Crescent, Salford, Manchester, M5 4WT, ENGLAND 2. Fudan Development Institute, Think Tank Building, Fudan University, 220 Handan Road, Shanghai, Yangpu District, 200433 CHINA Tel: +44 (0)161 295 2247; Fax: +44 (0)161 295 5022; Email:

Article ID: 417



Entrepreneur's imagination has crucial implication on business success and management. Despite its espoused importance, imagination is still undervalued and deserves more academic attention. The current article aims to provide a novel perspective on imagination informed by Heidegger (1889-1976; widely acknowledged to be one of the most original philosophers of the 20th century). Specifically, the article has clarified the definition of imagination in entrepreneurship and risen constructs align with the proposed conception. Under the microscope of Heidegger’s theory, entrepreneur’s imagination co-operates ventures successfully by incorporating notions of webs of significance, authenticity, spontaneity, heroes and moods, which guide opportunity identification and exploration in markets. The article has offered new insights to the knowledge of entrepreneur's imagination. From a pragmatic viewpoint, inferential leaps are possible because entrepreneurs practice against a background of webs of significance they own - which they relationally, linguistically and pragmatically - share across institutional frames. Implications of the findings on management are discussed. 


Entrepreneurship; Heidegger; Imagination; Instability; Unpredictability; Spontaneity

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