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NOTE: Since 2009 the title of the International Journal of Entrepreneurship Education (IJEE) has been changed to the title above.  ISSN numbers: IJEE 1649-2269 and IRE 2009-2822

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ISSN Number: 2009-2822. Frequency: 4 Issues per year (online only)  

Article #1680 - The Effects of Intuition and Analysis on High-Tech Opportunity Exploitation Decisions

IRE Vol 20: Issue 3, 2022 , Pages 337-362

Author(s): Leonie Baldacchino and Nadia Boffa (The Edward de Bono Institute for Creative Thinking and Innovation, University of Malta, Malta)

Abstract:
In the dynamic high-tech industry, entrepreneurs need to make timely decisions on various matters including opportunity identification and exploitation. Past research found intuition to positively predict the number and innovativeness of opportunities identified by high-tech entrepreneurs. However, insufficient research has been published on intuition in opportunity exploitation, which is necessary for business creation and growth. Guided by dual-process theory, which posits that intuition should be studied together with analysis, this study addresses the above-mentioned gap in the literature through the following research question: How are intuition and analysis related to entrepreneurs’ decisions to exploit high-tech opportunities? Data was gathered from 74 entrepreneurs using a mixed-methods approach comprising an online survey and verbal protocol analysis. A key finding of this study is that there was a greater amount of analytical than intuitive processing during high-tech opportunity exploitation decision-making, suggesting that entrepreneurs engage in more deliberate processes such as interpreting, convergent thinking and mental simulation at this stage, in an attempt to select the most promising option. Nevertheless, intuition was positively associated, while analysis was negatively associated, with the number of opportunities that participants decided they would exploit. This suggests that intuition plays an important role in opportunity exploitation, as it enables entrepreneurs to make decisions to pursue promising avenues, thereby counteracting the so-called ‘paralysis by analysis’.