COMMUNITY ENTREPRENEURSHIP AMONG LOWER CASTES IN INDIA: A GRASS-ROOTS CONTRIBUTION TOWARDS POVERTY ALLEVIATION AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT UNDER CONDITIONS OF ADVERSITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL UNCERTAINTY
Vol. Volume 14 Number 4 December/2009
MARIA COSTANZA TORRI
Numerous projects have been implemented with the aim of promoting the development of local enterprises as a means to improve the conditions of rural communities. Their failure points to the difficulty of adapting the concept of “entrepreneurship” to different cultural settings and to the diversity of community needs. Whereas the community is typically treated in the literature as an exogenous part of the environment for entrepreneurship, an emerging point of view is to treat the entrepreneur and the enterprise as embedded in a network of relationships, usually local. The objective of this paper is to investigate the conditions that enable community entrepreneurial activities to alleviate poverty and promote local development. The paper analyzes Gram Mooligai Limited (GMCL), a community-based enterprise in India active in the herbal sector, which delivered interesting results in relation to the paper’s focus.. Findings from this case study highlight the importance of seeing entrepreneurial activity and enterprise development programs in a much more holist way than they are conventionally understood.
Community-based enterprise, development, empowerment, India.