Bridging the traditional-progressive education rift through entrepreneurship
Journal article, 2016

Purpose – The purpose of this article is to use entrepreneurship to bridge the traditional – progressive education rift. Design/methodology/approach - The rift between traditional and progressive education is first deconstructed into five dualisms. Conceptual question-based analysis is then applied to determine if and how three entrepreneurial tools could contribute to bridging this rift; effectuation, customer development and appreciative inquiry. Finally, pattern based generalizations are drawn from this analysis. Findings – Patterns in the analysis motivate the articulation of an overarching educational philosophy – learning-through-creating-value-for-others – grounded in entrepreneurship and capable of bridging the educational rift. Research limitations/implications Only three entrepreneurial tools were included in the conceptual analysis, signifying a need to explore whether other tools could also help teachers bridge the traditional - progressive education rift. Entrepreneurial tools and the new educational philosophy manifesting entrepreneurship could also need to be further contextualized in order to be useful in education. Practical implications - The tentatively new educational philosophy has been shown to be capable of bridging five dualisms in education which are currently problematic for teachers in their daily practice, and to remedy teacher challenges such as complexity, lack of resources, assessment difficulties, and student disengagement. Originality/value – An educational philosophy grounded in entrepreneurship has arguably not been proposed previously. Contrasting existent educational philosophies, this new philosophy goes beyond learning-through to also emphasize creating-value-for-others. This could facilitate bridging between traditional and progressive education, one of the most important challenges in education. It could also be used to facilitate the infusion of entrepreneurship into general education.

educational philosophy

customer development


appreciative inquiry


entrepreneurial education


Martin Lackéus

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Entrepreneurship and Strategy

Mats Lundqvist

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Entrepreneurship and Strategy

Karen Williams Middleton

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Entrepreneurship and Strategy

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour and Research

1355-2554 (ISSN)

Vol. 22 6 777-803

Subject Categories

Educational Sciences




Driving Forces

Innovation and entrepreneurship

Learning and teaching

Pedagogical work



More information

Latest update

3/2/2022 6