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Mixed embeddedness of Brazilian entrepreneurs in Toronto

Roberto Pessoa de Queiroz Falcão (Universidade do Grande Rio (UNIGRANRIO –PPGA), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Michel Mott Machado (Centro Estadual de Educação Tecnológica Paula Souza (CEETEPS), São Paulo, Brazil)
Eduardo Picanço Cruz (Departamento de Empreendedorismo e Gestão, Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niterói, Brazil)
Caroline Shenaz Hossein (Global Development and Political Science, University of Toronto Scarborough, Toronto, Canada)

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research

ISSN: 1355-2554

Article publication date: 19 July 2021

Issue publication date: 11 October 2021




The purpose of this article is to investigate how social integration, immigrant networks and barriers to ventureing affect the entrepreneurial activities of Brazilians in Canada, indicating how mixed embeddedness takes place in that context.


Data were collected in Toronto, through the application of a survey with 74 Brazilian entrepreneur respondents and 42 semi-structured interviews with selected subjects, thus representing a multi-method approach. The analysis included descriptive statistics from the survey data and a qualitative analysis of the trajectories and life stories of Brazilian immigrants.


Our sample comprises respondents with a high level of education and proficiency in English, coming predominantly from the southeast of Brazil, white, aged from 30 to 49. The majority of businesses are small and related to the service sector. The article contributes to the literature by discussing the elements related to mixed embeddedness, including the need for cultural adaptation and for the creation of networks as a crucial element for business venturing.

Research limitations/implications

The study focuses on entrepreneurs regardless of their businesses sector or formality/informality status. It could be used as an instrument to support Canadian public policies for welcoming Brazilians and for the Brazilian government to prevent the evasion of potential entrepreneurs.


The article contributes to the body of knowledge of immigrant entrepreneurship in Canada and of Brazilian entrepreneurship overseas. The results suggest factors that may be relevant to the expansion of their business, such as social networking, cultural embeddedness and adaptation of the products/services to a wider range of target customers.



Funding: This paper was funded by the Post-doctorate “Brazilian Immigrant Entrepreneurship in Toronto”, held at York U. supported by the São Paulo Research Foundation - FAPESP (Process 2018/11276-0); and Call MCTIC/CNPq No. 28/2018 - “Comparative Study of the Immigrant Entrepreneurship of the Brazilian Communities in Portugal and Canada”.


Falcão, R.P.d.Q., Machado, M.M., Cruz, E.P. and Hossein, C.S. (2021), "Mixed embeddedness of Brazilian entrepreneurs in Toronto", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. 27 No. 7, pp. 1724-1750.



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