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 Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Entrepreneurship is crucial for economic development around the world. In places such as Nigeria, Egypt, and Indonesia, micro-entrepreneurs generate 38 percent of the gross domestic product. Analysis of time-series data demonstrates that small businesses create a disproportionate share of new jobs. They generate new ideas, new business models, and new ways of selling goods and services. Mobile devices represent a way for entrepreneurs to overcome the challenges of doing business.

Mobile phones help people communicate with one another, access market information, sell products across geographic areas, reach new consumers, enter mobile payment systems, and empower women and the disadvantaged. A report from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development found that “ICT infrastructure is an increasingly vital determinant of the overall investment climate of a country”. Furthermore, researchers have found that each “one percent increase in mobile penetration is associated with 0.5-0.6 rate of FDI/GDP”.

In this report, Darrell West discusses how mobile entrepreneurship improves the opportunities for social and economic development around the world. As part of Mobile Economy Project, West analyzes the importance of wireless technology for entrepreneurship, how mobile improves access to capital and market information, how it helps entrepreneurs serve broader geographic areas and reach new customers, the manner in which it empowers women and the disadvantaged, and the way mobile payments stimulate economic development. He concludes by outlining the steps we need to take to overcome current barriers to m-entrepreneurship.

West offers policy recommendations that outline the steps needed to overcome current barriers to m-entrepreneurship.

Download the full paper research here

(Source: Brookings)