Anderson, R. and Paul Dana, L. (2007), "Editorial", Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, Vol. 1 No. 1. https://doi.org/10.1108/jec.2007.32901aaa.001Download as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
It is a great honour to write the editorial for the inaugural issue of a new journal, and for this we would like to thank the many people at Emerald who have assisted in this entrepreneurial undertaking. The Journal of Enterprising Communities: People & Places was created to publish research that considers enterprise, people and places – a topic critical to the global economy as it is evolving.
Increasingly, the events critical to the sustainable prosperity of people (culturally, socially, economically and environmentally), are being played out at the nexus of the local or the community (people in places) and the trans-national (corporations, groups and movements of the civil sector, and supranational organizations and agreements). Business enterprises are the vehicles being used by communities of people in pursuit of sustainable prosperity as they define it, and this definition often foes far beyond simple academic criteria.
The lead paper in this issue, “Enacting local economic development: theoretical and methodological challenges” is by Bengt Johannisson, who argues that globalisation offers challenges to every individual, organisation and location. These contests can either be considered as openings for development or threatening lock-ins, not the least depending on how the modern communication and information technology is mastered. The purpose of his paper in this issue is to contribute to a conceptual framework that positions alternative ways to cope with these challenges from a local perspective. A three-dimensional model is proposed as a means of structuring contemporary public discourses on local economic development. The model is then tested in the Swedish rural setting. Reflections on the conceptualisation and the empirical lessons raise epistemological and ethical questions which trigger alternative methodologies for researching complex community-development processes.
“Socio-spatial variations in the nature of entrepreneurship” by Colin C. Williams, evaluates critically the discourse that entrepreneurship and enterprise culture are inextricably inter-twinned with profit-driven capitalist endeavour by seeking to understand whether amongst some populations, the culture of entrepreneurship is more socially-oriented than profit-driven. Findings suggest that there are different cultures of entrepreneurship across varying population groups. Many marginalised groups are more socially-orientated than profit-driven. This is particularly the case amongst the long-term registered disabled. Similarly, people living in rural areas display a greater propinquity to engage in social rather than commercial entrepreneurship than those living in urban areas.
These findings raise questions about whether it is appropriate to parachute into some populations a culture of commercial entrepreneurship that might be “foreign” to their enterprise culture and whether a focus on social entrepreneurship in the enterprise culture agenda will promote greater inclusiveness of populations traditionally under-represented.
The following paper, “Social capital as a club good: the case of ethnic communities and entrepreneurship” is by Craig S. Galbraith, Carlos L. Rodriguez, and Curt H. Stiles. They note that various sociological frameworks of social capital and social networks have provided powerful descriptive models of ethnic and immigrant population behaviours. They suggest, however, that previous analyses of ethnic social capital generally lacked an economic foundation that might also provide a prescriptive perspective. In this issue, they offer the economic theory of clubs as a potential unifying paradigm for the study of ethnic economies and social capital. Within this context, they conceptualise the benefits derived from an ethnic grouping as a “club” good supplied at the co-ethnic level, demanded by the various key stakeholders within an ethnic neighbourhood, economy or enclave, and with clear characteristics of excludability. Four propositions are then offered regarding the behaviour of ethnic entrepreneurs who draw from this important ethnic resource.
Richard Missens and his co-researchers contribute “Aboriginal partnerships in Canada: focus on the Diavik Diamond Mine”. The authors explain that natural resources support more than 650 communities in Canada, and they focus on the emerging diamond industry that has proven to be a success story of inter-cultural partnership. In negotiation with diamond companies, Aboriginal communities have provided their consent for the diamond mines and have ensured their participation in all diamond projects within their traditional territories. Five Aboriginal communities have signed partnership agreements, providing joint control of training, employment and business opportunities.
In their paper entitled “Constructions of entrepreneurship: a discourse analysis of academic publications” Karin Berglund and Anders W. Johansson investigate opposing versions of entrepreneurship and introduce a metaphor to stimulate a dialogue about the diversity and complexity of enterprising communities.
This is followed by a book review.
Robert Anderson and Leo Paul Dana