Entrepreneurs from Recent Migrant Communities and Their Business Sustainability


  • Muhammad Zubair Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt
  • Jan Brzozowski Cracow University of Economics http://orcid.org/0000-0001-8517-3485




visible minorities, migrant entrepreneurship, ethnic enclave, socio-economic integration


The studies on migrant entrepreneurship point out at the heterogeneous roles that the ethnic enclave economy plays in the development of migrant firms. On one hand, the ethnic enclave provides a specific shelter for migrant start-ups, on the other it is criticized for hindering the further growth of migrant firms due to high uncertainty and competition, low income and limited development perspectives of the ethnic market. However, in the case of the recent migrant communities, the ethnic enclave economy in a host country is in the early stage of development or simply does not exist. In such a case, the literature on migrant businesses does not give a precise explanation what are the perspectives of ethnic business development in a host country. In this exploratory paper, we analyze the perspectives of the business sustainability in the case of the visible minority entrepreneurs who have no access to the ethnic enclave economy resources and institutions. Consequently, we connect two important theoretical approaches in the studies on migrant entrepreneurship: ethnic enclave economy and mixed embeddedness theory. Based on selected case studies of Indian-Pakistani and Afghani entrepreneurs in Klagenfurt (Austria) and Arab and Vietnamese entrepreneurs in Kraków (Poland), we investigate which factors play a role in the ethnic business development and to which extent the migrant entrepreneurial activities constitute the sustainable economic strategy in a host country. Our exploratory findings show that in the case of migrant entrepreneurs from poorly developed ethnic economies, the embeddedness of migrant beyond just simple co-ethnic network and its extension to other migrant communities is crucial for the sustainability of the business. Therefore, this results confirm the predictions of the mixed embeddedness theory.


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How to Cite

Zubair, M., & Brzozowski, J. (2018). Entrepreneurs from Recent Migrant Communities and Their Business Sustainability. Sociologica, 12(2), 57–72. https://doi.org/10.6092/issn.1971-8853/8622