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Unlocking Productive Entrepreneurship in Africa’s Least Developed Countries

Author

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  • Zuzana Brixiova

Abstract

In Africa???s least developed countries (LDCs), escape from poverty and convergence to living standards of more advanced economies depends critically on structural transformation and the emergence of productive entrepreneurship that would accelerate growth and job creation. So far, however, subsistence agriculture has been the main source of employment in these countries, while a dynamic private sector in industry or high value-added services has remained elusive. Utilizing the flow approach to labor markets, this paper complements the empirical literature and numerous surveys on small and medium enterprise (SME) constraints and develops a theoretical framework that examines the main obstacles to entrepreneurship in Africa???s LDCs. The paper posits that given the persistent frictions in product and labor markets as well as skill shortages that characterize these economies, development of productive entrepreneurship cannot be left to markets alone. The policy analysis suggests that the state has an important role to play. Well-targeted government interventions including training of potential entrepreneurs and workers can help establish more modern and highly productive SME clusters that Africa???s LDCs need.
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Suggested Citation

  • Zuzana Brixiova, 2010. "Unlocking Productive Entrepreneurship in Africa’s Least Developed Countries," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 22(3), pages 440-451.
  • Handle: RePEc:adb:adbadr:627
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Mina Baliamoune-Lutz, 2007. "Entrepreneurship, Reforms, and Development: Empirical Evidence," ICER Working Papers 38-2007, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
    2. Baliamoune-Lutz, Mina, 2009. "Entrepreneurship and Reforms in Developing Countries," WIDER Working Paper Series 004, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
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    Cited by:

    1. Léonce Ndikumana & Mina Baliamoune-Lutz & Zuzana Brixiová, 2011. "Credit Constraints And Productive Entrepreneurship In Africa," Working Papers wp276, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
    2. Zuzana Brixiova, 2013. "Modeling productive entrepreneurship in developing countries," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 183-194, June.
    3. Michael Adusei, 2016. "Does Entrepreneurship Promote Economic Growth in Africa?," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 28(2), pages 201-214, June.
    4. Mina Baliamoune-Lutz & Zuzana Brixiov?? & L??once Ndikumana, 2011. "Credit Constraints & Productive Entrepreneurship in Africa," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp1025, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    5. Mina Baliamoune-Lutz & Stefan Lutz, 2017. "Financing and performance of female-owned firms in Middle Eastern and African Economies," Documentos de Trabajo del ICAE 2017-09, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Instituto Complutense de Análisis Económico.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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