Fostering Entrepreneurship

The OECD Jobs Strategy

Release Date: May 1, 1999

What is entrepreneurship? It is much more than the competition and risk-taking of starting your own business. Enterprises create jobs and wealth. Without the dynamism they bring to the economy, the challenges of globalization and structural change would be all but insurmountable. Fostering entrepreneurship means channeling entrepreneurial drive into a dynamic process that takes advantage of all the opportunities the economy can provide. This book analyzes the factors that favor entrepreneurship and the obstacles that hinder it. It is the first to provide an international synthesis of entrepreneurship policies undertaken in countries as diverse as Australia, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, and the United States.

International comparisons show that success comes from a synergy between a conducive institutional environment, well-designed government programs, and supportive cultural factors. To flourish, entrepreneurship requires efficient financial markets, a flexible labor market, a simpler and more transparent corporate taxation system, and bankruptcy rules better adapted to the realities of the business world. This book examines experiences in these fields and addresses the increasingly important roles played by local and regional authorities, the contribution of entrepreneurship in the non-profit sector, and the emergence of entrepreneurship in transition economies.