ABSTRACT. Entrepreneurship has been played up by the media as a visionary and heroic activity. Individual entrepreneurs have been glorified through media coverage, biographies, and publicity contributing to many government and public misconceptions entrepreneurship. This paper examines some of the myths about entrepreneurship, looking at relevant research and statistics, and paints a very different picture to general public perceptions. The paper then goes on to postulate that entrepreneurship is only part of the firm lifecycle, very little innovation is generated by start-up ventures, there is no common entrepreneurial type of person, people start new businesses for non-rational reasons, very few entrepreneurs actually have high growth ambitions, new firms generally don’t survive long, there are no success formulas, entrepreneurs are actually risk averse, successful products don’t make successful businesses, new product development rather than invention is needed, and that entrepreneurship doesn’t really contribute to economic growth. Before concluding, this paper briefly discusses entrepreneurial education, particularly that in the developing countries of ASEAN. pp. 55–104
JEL Classification: L26

Keywords: economic development, entrepreneurship, enterprise lifecycle, entrepreneurship education, firm survival, growth, innovation, invention, personality traits, risk

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University Malaysia Perlis

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