Toward an Untrepreneurial Economy? The Entrepreneurship Industry and the Rise of the Veblenian Entrepreneur

Rasmus Koss Hartmann, André Spicer, Anders Dahl Krabbe

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


Why is the quality of innovation-driven entrepreneurship seemingly declining? We argue the growing Entrepreneurship Industry and the way it has transformed entrepreneurship as an activity are important, under-appreciated explanations. By leveraging the Ideology of Entrepreneurialism to mass-produce and mass-market products, the Entrepreneurship Industry has made possible what we term Veblenian Entrepreneurship. This is entrepreneurship pursued primarily as a form of conspicuous consumption, and it is fundamentally different from the innovation-driven entrepreneurship that it emulates and superficially resembles. Aside from lowering average entrepreneurial quality, Veblenian Entrepreneurship has a range of (short-run) positive and (medium- and long-run) negative effects for both individuals and society at large. We argue that the rise of the Veblenian Entrepreneur might contribute to creating an increasingly Untrepreneurial Economy. An Untrepreneurial Economy appears innovation-driven and dynamic but is actually rife with inefficiencies and unable to generate economically meaningful growth through innovation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEntrepreneurialism and Society : Consequences and Meanings
EditorsRobert Eberhart, Michael Lounsbury, Howard E. Aldrich
Place of PublicationBingley
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing
Publication date2022
ISBN (Print)9781803826622
ISBN (Electronic)9781803826615, 9781803826639
Publication statusPublished - 2022
SeriesResearch in the Sociology of Organizations


  • Entrepreneurship
  • Entrepreneurial quality
  • Entrepreneurial entry
  • Entrepreneurship industry
  • Consumer culture theory
  • Consumption
  • Veblenian entrepreneur

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