26 October 1998
What is "entrepreneurship"? It is much more than the competition and risk taking of starting your own business. Enterprises create jobs and wealth. Without the dynamism they bring to the economy, the challenges of globalisation and structural change would be all but insurmountable. Fostering entrepreneurship means channelling entrepreneurial drive into a dynamic process which takes advantage of all the opportunities the economy can provide. This book analyses the factors that favour entrepreneurship and the obstacles that hinder it. It is the first to provide an international synthesis of entrepreneurship policies undertaken in countries as diverse as Australia, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United States. Despite varying degrees of entrepreneurship from one country to another, international comparisons show that success comes from a synergy between a conducive institutional environment, well-designed government programmes and supportive cultural factors.
To flourish, entrepreneurship requires efficient financial markets, a flexible labour market, a simpler and more transparent corporate taxation system and bankruptcy rules better adapted to the realities of the business world. This book examines experiences in all of these fields, as well as addressing the increasingly important roles played by local and regional authorities, the contribution of entrepreneurship in the non-profit sector, and the emergence of entrepreneurship in transition economies. Clearly, the right balance between these factors is not easy to strike. But strike it we must, because fostering entrepreneurship is not only a major economic imperative but also an urgent challenge that must be met to reconcile the goals of economic growth and social cohesion.
This book is part of the OECD Jobs Strategy and an integral part of this international organisation’s broader mission to develop public policies to help OECD economies adapt to structural change and globalisation.
For more information on obtaining this publication, please contact Lucy.Clarke@oecd.org