Political Entrepreneurship

Political Entrepreneurship

Regional Growth and Entrepreneurial Diversity in Sweden

Edited by Charlie Karlsson, Charlotte Silander and Daniel Silander

Political Entrepreneurship explores the role of political entrepreneurs in regional growth and entrepreneurial diversity. The authors define a political entrepreneur as a politician, bureaucrat or officer within the publicly funded sector who encourages entrepreneurship for growth and employment using innovative approaches. This book aims to enrich the established research on entrepreneurship with in-depth knowledge of the conditions conducive for political entrepreneurship in Sweden.

Chapter 6: Political entrepreneurship and sustainable growth in rural areas

Per Assmo and Elin Wihlborg

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship, economics and finance, economics of entrepreneurship, urban and regional studies, regional studies


Political entrepreneurs in local rural settings play a partly different, but still crucial role for local development. Here the prospects for development are more constrained: there are fewer resources and people, but mainly because of a limited local market and transportation constraints. Thus, political entrepreneurs have to use specific time-spatial power strategies to make changes. However, the concept of political entrepreneur includes a variety of roles, actions and characteristics. We will thus elaborate on the meaning of political entrepreneurs in their local time-spatial setting of rural communities. If local political entrepreneurs are to become crucial actors in policy-making and local development, we have to get to know them and no longer consider them as anomalies in the policy process and use them for improved local development. This chapter contributes in three ways to the general aim of the book to show the role that the political entrepreneur might play in promoting entrepreneurship, enterprise and entrepreneurial diversity. First, we will show the importance of the time-spatial setting of the political entrepreneur by using a time-geographical approach. Second, we elaborate on different types of political entrepreneurs. Finally, we will show how differently political entrepreneurs can promote local development by presenting three illustrations based on extensive bottom-up qualitative field studies.

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