Necessity Entrepreneurs

Necessity Entrepreneurs

Microenterprise Education and Economic Development

Edited by Jeremi Brewer and Stephen W. Gibson

Necessity entrepreneurs, in developing countries, are individuals who start small enterprises out of necessity. While they range from street sellers to educated hopefuls with little access to formal employment, the one thing that unites them is the need to survive. This volume is the first-known compilation of theories contributed by international scholars who have worked together to establish a theory-based discourse on necessity entrepreneurship, micro-enterprise education, and long-term economic development.


Stephen W. Gibson and Jeremi Brewer

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship, family business, development studies, social entrepreneurship


The field of necessity entrepreneurship is gaining traction in academia, as well as among international policy makers. This book comes to fruition just a few weeks after the Inaugural Necessity Entrepreneurship Conference, which was sponsored by the Ballard Center for Economic Self-Reliance in the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University, as well as the University of Illinois and the Kauffman Foundation. The primary purpose of the Necessity Entrepreneurship Conference was to provide thought leaders and policy makers from around the world with a platform that fostered theory creation and debate. Many of the chapters produced in this book were delivered, discussed, and debated during this conference. This book is the first volume of a two volume book series dedicated to clarify who necessity entrepreneurs are and how microenterprise education can more fully help necessity entrepreneurs productively impact the economic development of their respective families, communities, and nations. The theory presented in this volume suggests that microenterprise education can - if presented in a culturally-specific curriculum - do a greater amount of good for necessity entrepreneurs than loaning them money without business education.