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Motivations and Performance Conditions for Ethnic Entrepreneurship

  • Enno Masurel
  • Peter Nijkamp

Ethnic entrepreneurship has become a popular concept in a modern multi-cultural society. This paper seeks to offer an overview of the potential of ethnic entrepreneurship for solving inter alia the structural unemployment problems of ethnic groups in cities. There is a general lack of empirical evidence on this issue in the current literature. The present paper aims to fill this gap by addressing in particular the critical success conditions for ethnic entrepreneurs. The focus of the research is on variations in success across three ethnic groups in the Amsterdam area. By means of structured personal interviews with many ethnic entrepreneurs, a systematic qualitative data base was created. The paper sets out to identify empirically the driving forces for business success, such as education or the role of informal networks. The explanatory framework deployed for the identification of these qualitative success factors for distinct ethnic groups is based on a particular, recently developed artificial intelligence method, viz. rough set analysis. This multidimensional classification approach appears to be able to identify various important factors for the motivation and performance of ethnic enterprises. Two major findings emerge from this investigation: (i) performance conditions vary across ethnic groups, and (ii) informal networks are crucial for business success. Copyright 2000 Gatton College of Business and Economics, University of Kentucky.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Growth and Change.

Volume (Year): 33 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 238-260

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Handle: RePEc:bla:growch:v:33:y:2002:i:2:p:238-260
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  1. Israel M. Kirzner, 1997. "Entrepreneurial Discovery and the Competitive Market Process: An Austrian Approach," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 60-85, March.
  2. Bates, Timothy, 1997. "Financing small business creation: The case of Chinese and Korean immigrant entrepreneurs," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 109-124, March.
  3. Audretsch, David B, 1991. "New-Firm Survival and the Technological Regime," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(3), pages 441-50, August.
  4. Leo van Wissen, 2000. "A micro-simulation model of firms: Applications of concepts of the demography of the firm," Papers in Regional Science, Springer, vol. 79(2), pages 111-134.
  5. S Pinch, 1993. "Social polarization: a comparison of evidence from Britain and the United States," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 25(6), pages 779-795, June.
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