Living in beta: An ethical discussion of an entrepreneurial subjectification

Hallur Thor Sigurdarson

Student thesis: Master thesis


This thesis discusses entrepreneurship from an ethical perspective. Organizational managementhas been a leading perspective on entrepreneurship and innovative practices. Management ishowever based on control, a practice of organizing, structuring and limiting space. It can bedescribed as a reactive force. Entrepreneurship, on the other hand, is a creative practice ofopenings, of going beyond boundaries and creating lines of flight. It can be described as an activeforce. There is a need for different perspectives on entrepreneurship, which complement its activeforces, rather than cutting them off. In this respect this thesis proposes an ethical approachfounded on a post-modern philosophic thought.An ethical discussion is developed from a phrase, coined at the Copenhagen InnovationSymposium (CIS): learn to live in beta. The phrase represents an entrepreneurial subjectification,i.e. a constant becoming and a refrain in a chaotic world of chance and change, active and reactiveforces. The thesis sets out do describe living in beta based on the philosophical perspective andselected presentations and discussions from the Copenhagen Innovation Symposium, especiallydesign-driven innovation and experience economy.The conclusions made, are that the ethical substance of living in beta, is willing andembracing change. Its mode of subjectification is through problematizations and resistance.Solutions and meanings become reasons for new problems, for deterritorialization and creation ofnew meanings. Its approach or ethical work is an artful becoming of playfulness and affirmation.Living in beta is therefore, to unburden one of her own opinions, “to release oneself from oneself”, can be described as an objective of its problematizations and playfulness, which ultimatelycan be described as an affective or disruptive experience, an in-between event that dismantles life.Living in beta offers an alternative to managerial thought of entrepreneurship. Of freedomto create and openness, rather than control and limitations. Of ethical work, rather than moralvalues. It suggests a change in organizational structure and the boundaries between the roles ofmanagers and employees.

EducationsMSc in Philosophy, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2009
Number of pages90
SupervisorsDaniel Hjorth