Entrepreneurship in the Region

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National agricultural policies such as price subsidies to guarantee minimum farm incomes and the keeping of land in production when over-production already exists are definitely counter-productive to entrepreneurship.

Developing Entrepreneurship in KZN’S Northern Region – University of Zululand

The long run solution for sustainable agricultural development is only one, i. While prices can set the direction, entrepreneurs who will meet the challenge of increasingly demanding international markets and who will find profitable alternative uses of land, alternative business opportunities and so on are needed.

Therefore, policies and programmes targeted more specifically at the development and channelling of entrepreneurial talent, are needed. Policies to increase the supply of entrepreneurs, policies developing the market for other inputs into successful entrepreneurship, policies for increasing the effectiveness of entrepreneurs and policies for increasing demand for entrepreneurship can significantly speed up entrepreneurial activities at national, regional and community levels.

The policies and programmes targeted specifically to the development of entrepreneurship do not differ much with respect to location. From the perspective of the process of entrepreneurship, whether the location is urban, semi-rural or rural, is not important in itself. For example, the needs of a would be entrepreneur or an existing small business do not differ much from those in an urban area.

To realise their entrepreneurial ideas or to grow and sustain in business, they all need access to capital, labour, markets and good management skills. What differs is the availability of markets for other inputs.


The inputs into an entrepreneurial process, capital, management, technology, buildings, communications and transportation infrastructure, distribution channels and skilled labour, tend to be easier to find in urban areas. Professional advice is also hard to come by. Consequently, entrepreneurial behaviour, the ability to spot unconventional market opportunities, is most lacking in those rural areas where it is most needed i.

These are the reasons why rural entrepreneurship is more likely to flourish in those rural areas where the two approaches to rural development, the 'bottom up. Developing entrepreneurs requires a much more complex approach to rural development than is many times the case in practice. Evidence shows that where this is the case, individual and social entrepreneurship play an important role in rural economic, social and community development.

The top down approach gains effectiveness when it is tailored to the local environment that it intends to support. The second prerequisite for its success is that ownership of the initiative remains in the hands of members of the local community. The regional development agencies that fit both criteria can contribute much to rural development through entrepreneurship. Other institutions that can make a difference to rural development based on entrepreneurship are agricultural extension services. However, to be able to act in this direction, they too must be entrepreneurially minded.

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They must see agricultural activities as one of many possible activities that contribute to rural development. They must seek new entrepreneurial uses of land and support local initiative in this respect. While tradition is important it is nevertheless dangerous to be over-occupied with the past, otherwise the rural community may turn into a nostalgia-driven society. Networking between different agencies involved in the promotion of rural development through entrepreneurship, by pooling together different sources and skills, by reaching a greater number of would be entrepreneurs and by assisting a greater number of local entrepreneurial initiatives, can have a much more positive effect on rural development than when each agency is working on its own.

Entrepreneurship in rural areas can benefit a lot from the so called strategic development alliances, i. Is there still a need to talk specifically about women entrepreneurs. Yes and no. No, because all that has been said about entrepreneurship is directly applicable to women, the concept, characteristics, sources' etc. Women entrepreneurs, as research demonstrates, may do things differently. For example, in comparison to male entrepreneurs, women tend to work more in teams, are less self-centred and personal ego to them is less important than success of the organization or business idea they are pursuing.

However, there is no difference in characteristics such as achievement, autonomy, aggression, independence and benevolence between female and male entrepreneurs Hisrich and Brush, Also, no differences were found in risk taking propensity of male and female entrepreneurs. However, we do need to talk explicitly about women entrepreneurs. It should be stressed that rural women can encounter many constraints when trying to take part in the transformation process.

Rural areas tend to be more traditional in regard to the gender issue.


In rural areas, the gender issue is usually a much stronger hindering factor to potential female entrepreneurs than it is in urban areas, their self-esteem and managerial skills being lower when compared to urban women and access to external financial resources more difficult than in urban areas. Therefore, special programmes of assistance technical and financial to overcome these constraints should be developed and designed to meet the needs of rural women in order to be able to take an active part in entrepreneurial restructuring of their communities, to start to develop their own ventures, to expand their already existing businesses, or to function as social entrepreneurs since their number today is still below the potential one.

To this end, based on my own experience as well as on the experiences of so many entrepreneurial women I have met across the world in my profession and in business, I very much agree with. Juliana Schwager-Jebbink's comment , p. After my years as President of the Swiss Federation of Business and Professional Women, going all over the country and abroad to speak on development programmes for women, I firmly believe that quotas, positive discrimination and equal opportunity' politics do not help the female manager read entrepreneur : it is she herself who must do the managing of her life.

This is true for all of Europe This belief is the one for which we as trainers are responsible to bring to rural women in addition to trying to put in place all factors crucial for rural women to enter into entrepreneurial activities. Without it, entrepreneurial opportunities will not be seen, they will be lost and then the role of women in rural development will be much below their potential. Byrd, W.

Washington, D. The World Bank. Hisrich, R.


Journal of Small Business Management, 22, pp. Johonstone, W. Nicholson, M. Stone and R. Taylor Jones, L. Sakong Petrin, T. Prokopenko and I.

Bibliographic Information

Pavlin eds. Schwager-Jebbink, J. Stevenson, H. H, et al. New Business Ventures and The Entrepreneur. Homewood, IL: Irwin. Twaalfhoven, B. Indivers Abell and T. Koellermeier eds , Delwel Publisher, The Hague, , pp. Tyson, L. Petrin and H. Rogers Weber, M. On 5 August , Soichiro Honda died at the age of At the time of his death, Mr. In reading his obituary at the time I was beginning to think about what I wanted to discuss in this paper, it struck me that Mr. Honda's life had a lot to say about the real 'entrepreneur'. Honda was the son of a blacksmith and saw his first car as an 8 year old boy when a Model-T Ford rumbled into his home town in central Japan.

Entrepreneurship in the Region

Honda's biography quotes him as saying the following in recalling his first encounter with an automobile:. What a thrill. Oil dropped when it came to a halt.

How nice the smell was. I put down my nose to the ground like a dog and sniffed it. I smeared my hands with the oil and deeply inhaled the smell. It was then I dreamed of manufacturing a car myself some day. Honda started as a successful mechanic, founded a piston ring manufacturing concern while attending school and then started what later became Honda Motor Company. Originally it attached recycled engines to bicycles, a popular mode of transportation in the years following World War II. His first motorcycle called 'Dream' was introduced in Honda is said to have been more at home on the factory floor than in the boardroom, preferring overalls to business suits.

He placed great faith in the young technicians of his many factories and laboratories.

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