What is Entrepreneurship & its Types? (Mastering the art of entrepreneurship)

"What is entrepreneurship and its types" is the first of a series of articles aimed at igniting meaningful dialogues about starting, managing, and scaling a business. The main source of the information herein is the GoLearningBus Library.

The word “entrepreneurship” originates from the French word “entreprendre” which means “one who undertakes an endeavor.” Simply defined as starting a new business, entrepreneurship is a process of identifying opportunities, allocating resources, and creating value, bearing in mind the financial, social, and psychological risks associated with it. Wikipedia defines entrepreneurship as the creation or extraction of value.

Wikipedia Defination


Many economists have defined entrepreneurship in their own way. 

  • Some view it as a risk-taking ability, while others define it as a process of innovation where entrepreneurs provide new goods and services to market which are currently not being supplied.

                                                          ENTREPRENEURSHIP = PROCESS

                                                             ENTREPRENEUR = PERSON

                                                                ENTERPRISE = OBJECT

Most economists agree to the fact that entrepreneurship is a key ingredient for stimulating economic growth and employment opportunities in all societies. It is one of the four mainstream economic factors – capital, land, labor, and "enterprise", which are briefly defined below:

  • Capital can be represented by both, monetary resources which are used by companies to purchase land, natural resources, and other capital goods, and physical assets used to produce goods and services. 
  • Land includes natural resources like farms, fisheries, timber, etc. These natural resources are turned into consumer goods by various companies. 
  • Human capital is termed as labor which plays a quintessential role in converting raw and natural resources into consumer goods. 
  • Enterprise as defined by Merriam Webster is a project or undertaking that is especially difficult, complicated, or risky. As a concept, enterprise existed way back in the 17th century and was also a major topic in economic essays throughout the 18th and 19th centuries.

The term “entrepreneurship” was earlier associated with activities like launching a new business or a company, also termed as a start-up company. In recent years, however, the term has acquired a much broader meaning with political, social, and knowledge entrepreneurship also falling under the purview of its definition.

Political entrepreneurship

The practice of acquiring income by exploiting rent-seeking activities by politicians and political beneficiaries, it is an act of policy creation to appease the public in general and in turn further one’s political career. 

 Social entrepreneurship

The application of entrepreneurial principles to create and manage an enterprise to bring about social changes. Often seen as an alternative to mainstream capitalism so as to tackle the problems that the profit-driven businesses and government have failed to find an answer to. 

Knowledge entrepreneurship 

The ability to recognize or create an opportunity and take action aimed at realizing the innovative knowledge practice or product, it does not concentrate on monetary profit. The focus is on the throughput of knowledge and the research aspect. Suitable for educational institutions, educators, and researchers.


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                                      What does entrepreneurship mean to you?

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Sandile Shabangu 3 yrs

Great article, well structured, insightful. Thanks for sharing!