Design management capability in entrepreneurship: A case study of xiaomi

Sylvia Xihui Liu, Alison Rieple

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


In recent years, entrepreneurship has become a popular topic and attracted many young people to start their own companies. In entrepreneurship, design is generally viewed as essential to innovation, replacing the conventional role of the engineer. Unlike traditional businesses, which generally take a longer time to become established in the more stable economic context of mass production, current start-ups have to face fierce competition and have a tendency to expand rapidly and accommodate the dynamic business environment. Consequently, design management is considered to be crucial to business growth, since it contributes to both competitive advantage and strategic flexibility. However, start-up companies are well-known for their high failure rate. This triggered our initial research question: what is the role of design in a start-up to support it in achieving success? A case study of Xiaomi, a well-known successful enterprise in China, is used to report on the new capabilities of entrepreneurial design management. These are further classified into three key topics in line with the three stages of entrepreneurial business development. Unlike the design management capabilities reported in previous studies, the new capabilities show the dynamic nature of entrepreneurial design management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-138
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Design
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019


  • Design Capability
  • Design Management
  • Entrepreneurial Design Management
  • Entrepreneurship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Marketing


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