The opportunity not taken: The occupational identity of entrepreneurs in contexts of poverty

Angelique Slade Shantz, Geoffrey Kistruck, Charlene Zietsma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Innovative entrepreneurship is an essential but often missing outcome of poverty alleviation efforts. This qualitative study set in rural Ghana explores the occupational identity of entrepreneurs, the institutions that shape it in isolated “island networks” and how it influences entrepreneurs’ practices and decisions. We find that the institutional forces of “collectivism” and “fatalism” feature prominently. Being an entrepreneur in such settings means being a mentor, market link, and community safety net, and the types of opportunities entrepreneurs pursue are largely seen as pre-destined and inherited rather than individually chosen. As a result, the pursuit of innovative opportunities may be significantly limited.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)416-437
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Business Venturing
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2018

Fingerprint

Entrepreneurs
Poverty
Occupational identity
Mentor
Qualitative study
Poverty alleviation
Collectivism
Entrepreneurship
Ghana
Safety net

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

Cite this

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The opportunity not taken : The occupational identity of entrepreneurs in contexts of poverty. / Slade Shantz, Angelique; Kistruck, Geoffrey; Zietsma, Charlene.

In: Journal of Business Venturing, Vol. 33, No. 4, 01.07.2018, p. 416-437.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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