Teaching paradigm shifting in management education: university business schools and the entrepreneurial imagination

Chia, R. (1996) Teaching paradigm shifting in management education: university business schools and the entrepreneurial imagination. Journal of Management Studies, 33(4), pp. 409-428. (doi:10.1111/j.1467-6486.1996.tb00162.x)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.


This paper argues that the cultivation of the ‘entrepreneurial imagination’ is the singular most important contribution university business schools can make to the business community. Instead of the prevalent emphasis on the vocationalizing of business/management programmes in order to make them more ‘relevant’, university business schools should adopt a deliberate educational strategy that privileges the ‘weakening’ of thought processes so as to encourage and stimulate the entrepreneurial imagination. This requires a radical shift in pedagogical priorities away from teaching analytical problem‐solving skills to cultivating a ‘paradigm‐shifting’ mentality. This, in turn, requires that management academics themselves engage in the practice of what is termed here ‘intellectual entrepreneurship’. It is through this academic practice that management educators can become skilled in the art of crafting relationship between sets of apparently disparate ideas and of thus bringing alive the facts they are attempting to impart. Only when such facts are embellished and illuminated by a mind possessing an intimate sense for the power and beauty of ideas and the bearing of one set of ideas on another, can they become pregnant with meaning and therefore able to excite the entrepreneurial imagination. It is argued here that recourse to literature and the arts provides new avenues for exploring relational patterns and frames of understanding, as well as the micro‐logics of perceptual organization, necessary for cultivating a critical sensitivity to hidden assumptions and subtle relationships in social situations which lend themselves to entrepreneurial interventions.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Chia, Professor Robert
Authors: Chia, R.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Management
Journal Name:Journal of Management Studies
Publisher:Blackwell Publishers
ISSN (Online):1467-6486

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record