The role of small business in economic development
This paper sets out to evaluate the role that entrepreneurs and small businesses play in economic development. How important are entrepreneurs and small businesses in creating jobs, and are these the types of jobs that should be encouraged? How important are entrepreneurs and small businesses in the development of new products and new markets? Does promoting entrepreneurship and small businesses make sense as an economic development strategy? The answer is yes, but with some qualifications. Small businesses are potent job creators, but so are large businesses. The attribution of the bulk of net job creation to small businesses arises largely from relatively large job losses in large firms, not to especially robust job creation by small firms. More importantly, data show that large businesses offer better jobs than small businesses, on average, in terms of both compensation and stability. Further, there is little convincing evidence to suggest that small businesses have an edge over larger businesses in innovation. However, research and experience show that pursuing large businesses is likely to be a poor economic development strategy, which suggests that promoting entrepreneurship and fostering small businesses may offer a more viable alternative. But more research is needed to evaluate the case, and indeed, to determine whether or not public engagement in economic development itself is a cost-effective and worthwhile pursuit.
|Date of creation:||2004|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 1 Memorial Drive, Kansas City, MO 64198-0001|
Phone: (816) 881-2254
Web page: http://www.kansascityfed.org/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:|| Email: |
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Brown, Charles & Medoff, James, 1989.
"The Employer Size-Wage Effect,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1027-59, October.
- Schmidt, Christoph M & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 1991. "Work Characteristics, Firm Size and Wages," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 705-10, November.
- Mitra, Aparna, 2003. "Establishment size, employment, and the gender wage gap," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 317-330, July.
- Luojia Hu, 2003. "The Hiring Decisions and Compensation Structures of Large Firms," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(4), pages 663-681, July.
- Acs, Zoltan J & Audretsch, David B, 1987. "Innovation, Market Structure, and Firm Size," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(4), pages 567-74, November.
- George Symeonidis, 1996. "Innovation, Firm Size and Market Structure: Schumpeterian Hypotheses and Some New Themes," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 161, OECD Publishing.
- Kraybill, David S. & Yoder, Michael J. & McNamara, Kevin T., 1991. "Employer Size, Human Capital, and Rural Wages: Implications for Southern Rural Development," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 23(02), pages 85-94, December.
- John Bound & Clint Cummins & Zvi Griliches & Bronwyn H. Hall & Adam B. Jaffe, 1982.
"Who Does R&D and Who Patents?,"
NBER Working Papers
0908, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Oi, Walter Y. & Idson, Todd L., 1999. "Firm size and wages," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 33, pages 2165-2214 Elsevier.
- repec:dgr:rugsom:98b21 is not listed on IDEAS
- Evans, David S. & Leighton, Linda S., 1987.
"Why do Smaller Firms Pay Less?,"
87-19, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
- Timothy Dunne & Mark J. Roberts & Larry Samuelson, 1989.
"The Growth and Failure of U. S. Manufacturing Plants,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 104(4), pages 671-698.
- Dunne, T. & Roberts, M.J. & Samuelson, L., 1988. "The Growth And Failure Of U.S. Manufacturing Plants," Papers 1-87-5, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
- Vossen, Robert W., 1998. "Combining small and large firm advantages in innovation: theory and examples," Research Report 98B21, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).
- Josef Zweimuller & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 1999.
"Firm-Size Wage Differentials in Switzerland: Evidence from Job-Changers,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 89-93, May.
- Rudolf Winter-Ebmer & Josef Zweimueller, . "Firm Size Wage Differentials in Switzerland: Evidence from Job Changers," IEW - Working Papers 001, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
- Craig William Perry & Harvey S. Rosen, 2001.
"Insurance and the Utilization of Medical Services Among the Self-Employed,"
NBER Working Papers
8490, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Craig William Perry & Harvey Rosen, 2001. "Insurance and the Utilization of Medical Services Among the Self-Employed," CESifo Working Paper Series 580, CESifo Group Munich.
- Jan Zábojník & Dan Bernhardt, 2001. "Corporate Tournaments, Human Capital Acquisition, and the Firm Size—Wage Relation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(3), pages 693-716.
- Campbell, Carl III, 1994. "The determinants of dismissals tests of the shirking model with individual data," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 89-95, September.
- Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 2001. "Firm Size, Earnings, and Displacement Risk," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 39(3), pages 474-86, July.
- Acs, Zoltan J & Audretsch, David B & Feldman, Maryann P, 1994. "R&D Spillovers and Recipient Firm Size," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(2), pages 336-40, May.
- William F. Fox & Matthew N. Murray, 2004. "Do Economic Effects Justify the Use of Fiscal Incentives?," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 71(1), pages 78-92, July.
- Walter Y. Oi & Todd L. Idson, 1999. "Workers Are More Productive in Large Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 104-108, May.
- Kelly D. Edmiston, 2004. "The Net Effects of Large Plant Locations and Expansions on County Employment," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 289-320.
- Rene Morissette, 1993. "Canadian Jobs and Firm Size: Do Smaller Firms Pay Less?," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 26(1), pages 159-74, February.
- Kraybill, David S. & Yoder, Michael J. & McNamara, Kevin T., 1991. "Employer Size, Human Capital, And Rural Wages: Implications For Southern Rural Development," Southern Journal of Agricultural Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 23(02), December.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedkcw:2005-01. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Lu Dayrit)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.