Consumer entrepreneurship: What is it? When, how, and why does it emerge?

Domenico Dentoni, Kim Poldner, Stefano Pascucci, William B. Gartner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The objective of this chapter is to understand innovative processes of resource redeployment taking place during consumption. We label this as consumer entrepreneurship. We define consumer entrepreneurship as the process of sharing and recombining resources innovatively to seek opportunities for self-creating user value. Through the illustration of heterogeneous forms of consumer peer-to-peer sharing, we argue that consumer entrepreneurship: (1) differs ontologically from a view of entrepreneurship as creation of exchange value; (2) bridges the notion, established in marketing studies, of consumers as value creators with the field of entrepreneurship; (3) develops mostly when the process of sharing is regulated informally, based on trust relationships; and (4) thrives as groups of sharing consumers discover and enact their values through the experimentation of multiple forms of product and service procurement. On the basis of these points, consumer entrepreneurship contributes to provide a novel perspective on hybrid organizations, that is, a view of hybrid organizations as everyday spaces where consumers create heterogeneous forms of (utilitarian, social, or environmental) value that they personally use as opposed to reward exchanges. Relative to the current definition of hybrid organizations (Pache & Santos, 2013) and organizing (Battilana & Lee, 2014), we argue that consumer entrepreneurship helps better explain "why, when, and how" consumers increasingly engage in peer-to-peer sharing organizations - a fledging and still underexplored way of organizing consumption worldwide.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHybrid Ventures
ISBN (Electronic)9781787430778
ISBN (Print)9781787430785
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameAdvances in Entrepreneurship, Firm Emergence and Growth
ISSN (Print)1074-7540


  • Consumption
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Hybridity
  • Resources
  • Sharing

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