Informal entrepreneurship and informal entrepreneurial activity are a stark reality in Russia, as in many other mid-income transitional societies. Usually, they are seen in the literature to be the result of the Soviet past and a reflection of some societal specifics of the Russian society and culture. This chapter argues that in Russia, purely informal entrepreneurship is not widespread, and that it is mostly informal entrepreneurial activity by formal enterprises and sole traders which prevails, and that this is a reaction to the circumstances and patterns of the transition itself. The chapter deals with a description of motives, forms and contexts of informal entrepreneurial activity in contemporary Russia based on the interim results (2013–14) of a longitudinal panel survey of entrepreneurs and start-ups located in Moscow; it formulates some policy recommendations.
Alexander Chepurenko and Elena Malieva
Alexander Chepurenko, Vladimir Elakhovsky and Ekaterina Popovskaya
The chapter, based on the results of a survey conducted in 2011, deals with the factors explaining the uneven dissemination of entrepreneurial activity in Russia’s regions using the methodology of the Global Entreprenership Monitor (GEM) and a regionally representative sample of the adult population (N = 56 900). Most results do not confirm the evidence of the relevant literature dealing with Western economies: namely, a higher density of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) does not guarantee the prevalence of opportunity-driven entrepreneurs; only a rather low correlation between the level of urbanization and the general Total Early-Stage Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) index level could be found; the higher the level of urbanization, the higher also the prevalence of opportunity-driven early entrepreneurship; the correlation between unemployment and the share of necessity-driven early entrepreneurship in both urban and rural settlements is insignificant. Moreover, the level of well-being correlates with the share of opportunity-driven early entrepreneurship on the regional level. However, the correlation between both well-being (expressed in terms of both factual consumption as well as gross regional product per capita) and the TEA is non-significant. When both perceived opportunities to start a new venture and self-efficacy (especially) are higher, the TEA in respective regions is higher as well; but an analogous hypothesis for settlements types was denied.