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Abstract Details

Exploring Entrepreneurship in a Declining Economy
Vol. Volume 5, Number 1 April/2000

Attahir Yusuf and Minet Schindehutte

Attahir Yusuf is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Management Systems, Massey Univeristy, Palmerston North, New Zealand. This year (2000) he is a Visiting Lecturer at Sultan Qaboos University, Al Khod, Sultanate of Oman.

Minet Schindehutte is visiting Professor of Entrepreneurship with the Page Center for Entrepreneurship, School of Business, Oxford, Ohio.

The authors thank Michael Morris, the editor, and three anonymous reviewers for their useful comments and suggestions, and Salisu Adaya for his insight into the Nigerian economic situation.

The paper explores entrepreneurship in a period of economic decline by identifying reasons for business start-ups under such conditions and examining whether the reasons were extrinsic in nature and entrepreneurial in origin. The effectiveness of formal enterprise support programs and initiatives was also examined. The findings indicate that business start-ups were not motivated by extrinsic factors alone, even in adverse economic circumstances. As expected, it was also found that adverse conditions tend to produce more survivalist or ñmom and popî types of ventures as opposed to innovative, growth-oriented firms. Enterprise support programs and initiatives designed to support the small business sector as agents of economic recovery were found to be ineffective in this role.

Keywords: Declining economies, entrepreneurship, developing countries, enterprise support systems