Title: 'What is your self-made expat story?' Netnography of entrepreneurial re-users of a popular semantic

Authors: Steffen Roth; Léo-Paul Dana

Addresses: ESC Rennes School of Business, 2 Rue Robert d'Abrissel, 35000 Rennes Cedex, France; Yerevan State University, 1 Alex Manoogian, 0025 Yerevan, Armenia ' Montpellier Business School, 2300 Avenue des Moulins, 34185 Montpellier Cedex 4, France

Abstract: The label 'expatriate' is increasingly used by, and applied to, an increasing number of persons who do not fit classical concepts of company-driven expatriation. While relevant research is engaged in establishing interaction with smaller samples of self-initiated expatriates, the present article represents netnography of a larger, international sample of self-designated self-initiated expatriates who, independently of any research intervention, engaged in an online conversation headlined 'Self-Made Expats?' on the international expatriates platform internations.org. While key findings from this non-responsive approach to the self-disclosures of an internationally-diverse web community of self-made expatriates support certain dimensions of prevailing academic definitions, they also suggest reconsidering the so far disclaimed relevance of entrepreneurial spirit for the concept of self-initiated expatriation.

Keywords: self-initiated expatriation; self-made expats; entrepreneurial career paths; migrant entrepreneurship; internations.org; netnography; expatriates.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2016.077575

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2016 Vol.28 No.4, pp.492 - 503

Received: 03 Jun 2015
Accepted: 23 Aug 2015

Published online: 06 Jul 2016 *

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