The role of the ethnic enclave in facilitating immigrant business performance and social integration

Zolin, Roxanne, Chang, Artemis, & Steffens, Paul R. (2014) The role of the ethnic enclave in facilitating immigrant business performance and social integration. In Davidsson, Per (Ed.) Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship Research Exchange Conference 2014 Proceedings, Queensland University of Technology, Sydney, NSW, pp. 1212-1224.

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Chinese immigrant entrepreneurs, known the world over for their successful business practices (Kee, 1994), tend to start businesses within their ethnic enclave. But in a move away from multiculturalism, host countries increasingly fear that immigration and asylum pose a threat to social integration resulting in a lack of social cohesion and a plethora of government programs (Cheong, Edwards, Goulbourne & Solomos, 2007).

For many immigrant entrepreneurs, the EE is an integral part of their social and cultural context and the location where ethnic resources reside (Logan, Alba & Stults, 2003). Immigrant entrepreneurs can harness the networks for labor and customers through various ties in their EE (Portes and Zhou, 1996). Yang, Ho and Chang (2010) illustrate in their paper that the Chinese immigrant entrepreneurs (IE) were able to utilize ethnic network resources as their social capital in order to reduce transaction costs and thus enhance business performance. Tilly (1990) explains that immigrants’ reliance on such networks for business or other information minimizes the socioeconomic hardships they would experience in host countries (Raijman & Tienda, 2000). Acquiring jobs in ethnic businesses and establishing businesses within an EE may facilitate migrants’ social integration into the host country (Tian & Shan, 1999).

Although an EE has distinct economic advantages for immigrant entrepreneurs, Sequeira and Rasheed (2006: 367) argue that ‘Exclusive reliance on strong ties within the immigrant enclave has a negative effect on growth outside the enclave community.’ Similarly, Drori, Honig and Ginsberg (2010: 20) also propose that ‘The greater the reliance of transnational entrepreneurs on ethnic (versus societal) embedded resources and network structure, the narrower their possibilities of expanding the scope of their business.’

This research asks, ‘What is the role of the ethnic enclave in facilitating immigrant business growth and social integration?

This project has the following important aims:

A1 To better understand the role of IE, in particular Chinese IE in the Australian economy

A2 To investigate the role of the EE in facilitating or inhibiting immigrant business performance

A3 To understand how locating their firm inside or outside of the EE will affect the IE’s embeddedness in co-ethnic and nonco-ethnic networks and social integration

A4 To understand how an IE’s social network affects business performance and social integration

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 71141
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Keywords: Ethnic Enclaves, Business Performance, Wellbeing , Social Integration , Immigrant Entrepreneurs
ISBN: 9781921897962
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > BUSINESS AND MANAGEMENT (150300) > Entrepreneurship (150304)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Australian Centre for Entrepreneurship
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Management
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 08 May 2014 02:55
Last Modified: 09 May 2014 03:03

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