Peace, Prosperity, and Pro-Growth Entrepreneurship

Support for entrepreneurship is widely seen as a mechanism to facilitate prosperity and peace in a growing number of post-conflict states. This paper critically evaluates this view. It argues that entrepreneurship is a ubiquitous quality in post-conflict states but not necessarily always for the good. Unproductive and destructive entrepreneurship may inhibit the resurgence of the private sector and might even cause a relapse into conflict. To limit unproductive and destructive entrepreneurship there are at least six dimensions which need to be taken into consideration, namely: the context of war, the relationship between institutions and entrepreneurship, the role played by ethnic/immigrant (minority) entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs in diaspora, the scope of the market, human and financial capital requirements, and appropriate forms of government support. Further research on entrepreneurship in post-conflict states is needed to overcome the current lack of data, which constrains policy design. WIDER Discussion Paper 2007/02 by Wim Naudé. http://www.wider.unu.edu/publications/dps/dps2007/dp2007-02.pdf

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