Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Spatial Disparities: Divisions and Changes of Self-employment and Firms

Bögenhold, Dieter and Fachinger, Uwe (2009): Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Spatial Disparities: Divisions and Changes of Self-employment and Firms.

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Abstract

Topic of the paper is the development of professional self-employment during the last decades in Germany. The discussion is divided into a theoretical and an empirical section. The first theoretical part deals with the term entrepreneurship and asks for its overlapping with categories of self-employment and of innovation. Although these terms cover only partially the same meanings, political discourse often equals the slogan to foster entrepreneurship and innovation with an increase of self-employment. The second section of the paper is concerned with concrete investigation of development patterns of occupational self-employment since the beginning of the 1990th until 2006 based upon microcensus data for Germany. First of all, the overall increase of self-employment becomes visible but the principle lines hide further fundamental structural changes. A majority of those „new“ self-employed people belongs into the category of solo-self-employment and micro firms without further employees. An equation of entrepreneurship with innovation activities and in-creasing self-employment ratios falls too short and is problematic with respect to discussion on economic policy needs to increase growth. Differentiation for regions, economic sectors and gender offers a picture which is contradictory and which does not correspond with some causal explanations as found conventionally.

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