PurposeEntrepreneurship is a critical and necessary condition for sustained economic development. Different societies are more or less developed because they are endowed with more or less enterprising social groups. Entrepreneurship does not flourish in a social vacuum; its development is affected by cultural, socio-political and policy contexts in a given country or region. The purpose of this paper is to examine the culture of entrepreneurship in Ethiopia and analyse the role of micro and small enterprises development (MSED) as an approach towards promoting the culture of entrepreneurship by drawing empirical data from Bahir Dar, a fast-growing regional city in Ethiopia.Design/methodology/approachThe data were collected through a survey of 136 small enterprises that were established under the MSED programme. Besides, an in-depth interview of key informants and document analysis methods were used to generate qualitative data for analysis.FindingsEthiopia remained an agrarian society to this date because of the lack of enterprise culture and entrepreneurial social groups which have been effectively prevented from growing by traditions that consider entrepreneurial activities ignoble and also by the anti-enterprise Marxist regime that prevailed until the early 1990s. The study also reveals that the MSED programme which is underway since the early 2000s has positive effects in promoting entrepreneurship.Originality/valueThe role of entrepreneurship and enterprise culture as an important factor of the development process has not been a concern in Ethiopian academic and policy-making circles. This study thus would help initiate further research and discussion on the issue.
Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 5, 2018
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