Title: Why do entrepreneurial individuals locate in non-metropolitan regions?

Authors: Tina Haisch; Frans H.J.M. Coenen; Jessica D.S. Knall

Addresses: Institute of Geography and Center for Regional Economic Development (CRED), University of Bern, Hallerstrasse 12, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland ' CSTM – Department of Governance and Technology for Sustainability, Faculty of Behavioral, Management and Social Sciences, University of Twente, PB 215, 7500 AE Enschede, The Netherlands ' Landscape and Science Communication, Blumenstr. 22, D-79111 Freiburg i. Brsg., Germany

Abstract: This paper analyses the dynamics of personal location choices of entrepreneurs in five European non-metropolitan regions. We started with the research question as to why these highly talented and creative individuals, who could live almost anywhere in the world, chose non-metropolitan regions, instead of the vibrant urban agglomerations with multiple (business) opportunities. The analysis showed that regional embeddedness, quality of life factors (amenities), combined with a specific entrepreneurial climate, contributed to these choices. Furthermore, different types of entrepreneurs exhibited distinct location choices. On the one hand, entrepreneurs in creative industries valued an open and tolerant neighbourhood coupled with cultural amenities and qualities of the natural environment. On the other hand, entrepreneurs in other economic sectors and sciences appreciated the more traditional factors of good schools, business opportunities and an attractive housing market.

Keywords: entrepreneurship; non-metropolitan regions; location choices; regional development; quality of life; personal choices; entrepreneurs; Europe; regional embeddedness; entrepreneurial climate; creative industries; tolerance; cultural amenities; natural environment; good schools; business opportunities; housing markets; economics; sciences.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEIM.2017.10003798

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, 2017 Vol.21 No.3, pp.212 - 233

Received: 31 Mar 2016
Accepted: 26 May 2016

Published online: 20 Mar 2017 *

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