WG5 – Entrepreneurial skills and competences, knowledge and innovation systems and new learning arrangements
Rural entrepreneurship plays a key role in capturing innovation, maintaining and developing communities, providing job opportunities and moderating the relationship between farming, land-use, community and economic development. Whilst changes in the environment, ageing demographic and alternative demands on land use have in recent years placed stress on the rural entrepreneurial ecosystem, the accelerating rate of urbanization brings into question how rural businesses can be understood in an urbanizing world.
Urbanization is a phenomenon that encompasses the developed and developing contexts. Whilst these contexts have often been conceptualised within the separate fields of Rural Entrepreneurship in the developed world and International Development in the developing world, ‘traditional’ rural businesses are under pressure to change: with farm and non-farm rural entrepreneurs required to continuously update their skills and competencies in order to survive the challenge of, and provide for, an urbanizing society.
Brunton et al (2010) suggest that entrepreneurship research either ignores emerging economies or at best uses them as test-beds for theories established in mature economies, whilst theories for the developing world specifically tend to fall within the fringe of the International Business discipline.
The track is focused on original multi-disciplinary papers that explain the various phenomena that relate to urbanizing rural entrepreneurship and integrate these wider contexts. Papers may encompass either the developing and developed contexts, with those that address both particularly welcome. Papers may relate to ontology / epistemology, ‘grand theory’, or key areas in rural entrepreneurship such as:
1. Entrepreneurial skills and competencies
– a. Farms and farmers
– b. Non-farm business
– c. Non-traditional rural sectors (Home-Based; Informal)
2. Change in knowledge and innovation systems
– a. Dynamic entrepreneurial eco-systems / Regional Innovation Systems
– b. An evolving Rural-Urban dichotomy
– c. Institutional approaches (socially productive / destructive)
3. New learning arrangements
– a. New Rural Paradigm(s)
– b. ‘Adaptive’ forms of organisation
– c. Technological delivery systems
4. Informal sector and illegal rural enterprise
5. Home-Based Business (incubators; industrial restructuring)
6. Environmental sustainability
7. Institutional frameworks and rural governance
We welcome papers from any methodology and strongly encourage collaboration between colleagues in developing and developed countries.
Papers will be considered for a special issue of the International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation: http://www.ippublishing.com/ijei.htm
Professor Gerard McElwee, University of Huddersfield, United Kingdom
Dr Robert Newbery, Plymouth University, United Kingdom