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The Hidden Side of Enterprise: A Study of the Motivations Behind Informal Self Employment
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This investigation aims to explore the motivating factors behind the decision to engage in informal self-employment within ethnic economies. Through a series of semistructured qualitative interviews with Latin American immigrant women participating in informal self-employment in Stockholm, this study focuses on the ways in which agency and structure can influence economic decisions. Using the theory of mixedembeddedness, the results show that participating in informal self-employment can be understood as both a product of capitalizing on available social and ethnic resources, as well as the outcome of limited opportunities in traditional labour markets. While social and ethnic networks facilitate informal exchanges and provide an environment in which alternative employment opportunities become available, the decision to start an informal enterprise correlates with a lack of other opportunities, due to factors such as discrimination, a lack of language skills, limited access to start-up capital and a complex institutional context for small-scale entrepreneurs.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 39 p.
Keyword [en]
informal self-employment, ethnic enterprise, mixed-embeddedness, opportunity structure
National Category
Economic Geography Human Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-126026OAI: diva2:896857
Available from: 2016-02-03 Created: 2016-01-22 Last updated: 2016-02-03Bibliographically approved

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