Title: The failure of community-based entrepreneurship in Haiti

Authors: Mats Lundahl

Addresses: Stockholm School of Economics, Box 6501, SE-11383 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: Community-based entrepreneurship is entrepreneurship facilitating the emergence of other entrepreneurs. It is linked to communal and cooperative structures of various kinds. Haiti is a country with many such structures. Still, no community-based entrepreneurship has emerged. The article identifies the reasons for this. Traditional structures have dissolved or changed character. Modern cooperatives have had a bad start, partly because of political interference and the trade union movement has been largely politicised. The Haitian business tradition is individualistic. In the food market competition rules, in the coffee market oligopolistic collusion has alternated with stern competition, in other branches the state has acted to protect a few producers, and the assembly sector has had to compete in the international market. The gaps between the common man, the government and the elite have militated against community-based entrepreneurship. Finally, social capital and trust are lacking and this does not produce leaders that further entrepreneurship.

Keywords: business tradition; community entrepreneurship; communal structures; Haiti.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIRD.2010.029858

International Journal of Innovation and Regional Development, 2010 Vol.2 No.1/2, pp.112 - 127

Published online: 02 Dec 2009 *

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