Entrepreneurship, small family business and Yiwu's historical development

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Yiwu has transformed from one of the poorest rural counties until 1970s to one of the richest modern cities in China in the 2010s. This paper examines this significant historical transformation and its key contributing factors. It demonstrates how Yiwu transformed along the five dimensions of marketization, industrialization, urbanization, internationalization and digitalization. It also identifies what historical and contemporary factors stimulated the rapid growth of Yiwu and how Yiwu is a special case in comparison to other Chinese localities. The paper also argued that business entrepreneurship and family business, local government and their supportive interaction have played particular roles in promoting Yiwu’s transformation. This study builds on and contributes to literature across the fields of development, entrepreneurship, small and family business, demonstrating how entrepreneurship can promote small family business and economic development even if a region is lacking in what are often assumed to be necessary resources, but that for this to be the case there is the need for a supportive and risk-taking government.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Conference of Family Business and Entrepreneurship, 2-4 May 2018, Bali, Indonesia
PublisherInternational Conference of Family Business and Entrepreneurship
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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