To read this content please select one of the options below:

Entrepreneurship and Economic Development in Africa: A Paradox

Enterprise and Economic Development in Africa

ISBN: 978-1-80071-323-9, eISBN: 978-1-80071-322-2

Publication date: 11 June 2021


The debate that entrepreneurship is an engine of economic development has been a long-standing one. The higher the level of entrepreneurial activities, the higher the economic development. However, this literature is contradictory or elusive in Sub-Saharan Africa. Entrepreneurial activities are high in Africa, but economic development is not. Using Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM, 2017) data, the chapter discusses some of the contradictory factors. Further data were collected from 60 businesses, 20 each from Cameroon, Nigeria and Uganda for more clarification in 2019. The results show that the economic development is solely measured in economic terms. Entrepreneurship in Africa operates in an embedded context quite different from that of developed nations. Africans are often only making do with the environment in which they find themselves; thus, entrepreneurship in Africa should not be seen as unproductive considering the context and motives of the entrepreneurs.



Ning, E.N. (2021), "Entrepreneurship and Economic Development in Africa: A Paradox", Nziku, D.M. and Struthers, J.J. (Ed.) Enterprise and Economic Development in Africa, Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 15-37.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021 Emerald Publishing Limited