Title: The role of diaspora entrepreneurs in start-up ecosystem development - a Berlin case study

Authors: Thomas Baron; Aki Harima

Addresses: Chair in Small Business and Entrepreneurship, University of Bremen, Wilhelm-Herbst-Str. 5, D-28359 Bremen, Germany ' Chair in Small Business and Entrepreneurship, University of Bremen, Wilhelm-Herbst-Str. 5, D-28359 Bremen, Germany

Abstract: Start-up ecosystem has reached great attention in the recent research. Understanding how dynamic ecosystems develop has become of major interest for policy makers due to a potential regional economic well-being. In this study, we explore how the uniqueness of diaspora entrepreneurs may contribute to the development of a successful start-up ecosystem. Based on a case study conducted in Berlin, we analyse the role of diaspora entrepreneurs in ecosystem development with a conceptual framework developed from Austrian capital theory. The empirical findings show that diasporans are an auspicious co-creator for Berlin's ecosystem development as they enrich the supportive environment with diverse resources that local entrepreneurs cannot provide. We found that diasporans in Berlin reinforce the ecosystem's capitals and act as important 'interweavers' of such capitals to the unique and successful structure of Berlin's start-up ecosystem.

Keywords: start-up ecosystem; Berlin; diaspora entrepreneurship; bi-focality; mixed embeddedness.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2019.096968

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2019 Vol.36 No.1/2, pp.74 - 102

Received: 02 Jul 2016
Accepted: 02 May 2017

Published online: 04 Dec 2018 *

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