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Trust formation and experiences of prejudice and discrimination of Roma entrepreneurs in Finland

Ritva Anttonen (The School of Business and Economics, University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland)

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy

ISSN: 1750-6204

Article publication date: 30 May 2008

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe and to gain an understanding of the prejudices and discrimination faced by Finnish Roma entrepreneurs in their business activities.

Design/methodology/approach

The starting point to this phenomenographical research is social marginality since the people of the Roma continue to exist at the margins of Finnish society. As a result of the study, how Roma entrepreneurs observe and understand discrimination against them in the business world is described and the manner in which their perceptions are formed is explored.

Findings

The entrepreneurs interviewed had experienced prejudice and discrimination in interactions with revenue offices, TE‐Centres (Employment and Economic Development Centre), city councils, banks, insurance companies, suppliers, retailers, customers and with competitors.

Practical implications

Creating trusting relationships with special interest groups was seen as the best method by which to reduce the prejudices. The perception of the Roma entrepreneurs was that the solution to discrimination is through the elimination of prejudice which would be most successfully achieved through cooperation between the Roma and the main population.

Originality/value

This paper gives an understanding of the Roma people as entrepreneurs in a prejudiced society.

Keywords

Citation

Anttonen, R. (2008), "Trust formation and experiences of prejudice and discrimination of Roma entrepreneurs in Finland", Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, Vol. 2 No. 2, pp. 124-139. https://doi.org/10.1108/17506200810879952

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited