New Urban Economic Agents: A Comparative Analysis of High-Performance New Entrepreneurs

Karima Kourtit 1 , 2 , Peter Nijkamp 3 , 4 ,  and Soushi Suzuki 5
  • 1 KTH Royal Institute of Technology School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Division of Urban and Regional Studies, Drottning Kristinas väg, 30 10044 Stockholm, Sweden Poland
  • 2 Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland
  • 3 Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland Netherlands
  • 4 VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • 5 Hokkai-Gakuen University Sapporo, Japan

Abstract

Migrants are often the carriers of new skills and original abilities. This study focuses on the importance of ‘new urban entrepreneurship’ - in particular, ethnic or migrant business firms - as a major driver of creative and urban dynamics and economic vitality in urban agglomerations. The paper offers a general account of both backgrounds and socio-economic implications of migrant entrepreneurship in large agglomerations and highlights the socio-economic heterogeneity in motivation and performance among different groups of migrant entrepreneurs. This demographic- cultural diversity prompts intriguing questions about differences in business performance among distinct groups of migrant entrepreneurs, even in the same ethnic group. In the paper, a recently developed and amended version of data envelopment analysis (DEA), viz. super-efficiency, is presented and applied to a group of Moroccan entrepreneurs in four large cities in the Netherlands. The main research aim is (i) to identify the best-performing firms (so-called ‘entrepreneurial heroes’) from a broad management and business perspective, while (ii) the background of our findings are more thoroughly analysed. The paper ends with some general concluding remarks on urban business strategies.

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