What is it about?

Recently, a growing stream of literature on entrepreneurship has revealed that many entrepreneurs start-up their enterprises operating wholly or partially off-the-books. This paper evaluates critically the assumption that these shadow entrepreneurs are engaged in for-profit economic entrepreneurship.

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Why is it important?

Reporting a 2005 survey involving interviews with 43 shadow entrepreneurs in North Nottinghamshire in the UK, the finding is that shadow entrepreneurs range from purely rational economic actors pursuing for-profit logics through to purely social entrepreneurs pursuing only social logics, with the majority somewhere in-between. The result is a call for more nuanced understandings of the heterogeneous logics of shadow entrepreneurs.

Perspectives

Are entrepreneurs operating in the informal sector always doing so for profit-motivated reasons?

Professor Colin C Williams
University of Sheffield

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This page is a summary of: Evaluating entrepreneurs in the shadow economy: economic or social entrepreneurship?, International Journal of Management and Enterprise Development, January 2011, Inderscience Publishers, DOI: 10.1504/ijmed.2011.042970.
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