Handbook of Research on Entrepreneurship Policies in Central and Eastern Europe

Handbook of Research on Entrepreneurship Policies in Central and Eastern Europe

Elgar original reference

Edited by Friederike Welter and David Smallbone

This unique Handbook explores the role of government in the development of entrepreneurship in countries where twenty years ago private enterprise was illegal or barely tolerated.

Chapter 2: The Local Dimension of Entrepreneurship Policy: The Example of East Germany

Andrea-Rosalinde Hofer and Friederike Welter

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship


Andrea-Rosalinde Hofer and Friederike Welter INTRODUCTION Across Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries entrepreneurship policy belongs to a horizontally organized governance area with cross-ministerial responsibilities and influences and vertical connections with lower government tiers in the design, delivery and evaluation of policies and programmes. Policy effectiveness depends thus, firstly, upon the degree of institutional adaptation across ministerial boundaries, and, secondly, because of the important local dimension of entrepreneurship, upon a mix of institutional and contextual adaptation across different tiers of government to adapt objectives, targets and delivery ways to ‘local’ requirements. Cross-tier policy partnerships are a widely spread governance instrument to enhance the tailoring of policies to local contexts and business needs (OECD 2009). This allows for an involvement of local actors in the policy process, reflecting the fact that entrepreneurship is primarily a local event: Even if input and output are getting more and more globalized, connectivity, local availability finance and space, as well as the local institutional environment influences the decision to start and run a business. Local contexts thus have a major impact on the extent and nature of entrepreneurship development, as the literature on spatial variations illustrates (for example, Reynolds et al. 1994). This chapter discusses some of the key features of the local dimension of the East German entrepreneurship policy framework, in which local policy actors are mainly involved in the delivery of higher-tier designed policies and programmes. The discussion around the importance of a ‘local policy space’ that goes beyond reaction and...

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