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In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic: Perceived risks, management strategies and emerging opportunities for small and medium agri-food enterprises in a developing country
The Nordic Africa Institute, Research Unit. Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6764-1887
Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden; Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension & Rural Development, University of Pretoria, South Africa; Department of Agricultural Economics, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa.
Department of Agricultural Economics, Al-Azhar University, Assiut, Egypt.
Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.
2023 (English)In: International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, E-ISSN 2212-4209, article id 104045Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The Covid-19 pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges to small and medium agri-food enterprises (SMAEs) in developing countries. However, research investigating what risks Covid-19 posed to these firms, how they responded, and what business opportunities emerged to SMAEs from the pandemic remains scanty. Drawing on a sample of 166 specialist SMAEs in Egypt, this study addressed these entwined questions by using multiple indicators and multiple causes (MIMIC) and mediation analysis. Our results point out that the Covid-19 pandemic exposed Egyptian SMAEs to complex and multidimensional risks, and caused profound effects on both upstream and downstream stages of their supply chains. In general, Egyptian SMAEs adopted a ‘wait-and-see’ approach to cope with such Covid-19 risks and impacts, which was attributed to their lack of sufficient financial resources to develop risk management strategies and formalize structures to deal with unexpected events. Interestingly, the results showed that several business opportunities emerged from pandemic; but SMAEs' resource disadvantages constrained their capacity to seize and exploit these opportunities. Moreover, we found that mitigation strategies adopted by SMAEs present a mediating factor between perceived Covid-19 risks and perceived business opportunities. Overall, our findings call for a paradigm shift in relation to enterprise risk management in developing countries' SMAEs toward more holistic frameworks to enhance their preparedness to future shocks, make mature operational and strategic management decisions, and exploit strategic opportunities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023. article id 104045
National Category
Other Agricultural Sciences Economics
Research subject
Economy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:nai:diva-2881DOI: 10.1016/j.ijdrr.2023.104045OAI: oai:DiVA.org:nai-2881DiVA, id: diva2:1804368
Available from: 2023-10-12 Created: 2023-10-12 Last updated: 2023-11-22Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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