Two hundred million people between 18-64 years old are actively engaged in starting or running new businesses in 59 economies as the study released by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) reports. GEM is the largest and most comprehensive worldwide research study of entrepreneurial attitudes, activities, and aspirations.
The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor 2010 Report estimates 63 million of these early-stage entrepreneurs expect to hire at least five employees over the next five years; 27 million anticipate hiring twenty or more people to fill newly created jobs. The potential contribution of entrepreneurship in job creation across the globe is important to economic growth.
Entrepreneurship’s contribution to an economy is based on more than numbers of entrepreneurs, it is important to consider the impact small businesses have on economic growth, innovation, and internationalization.
For job creation, “policy makers need to look beyond simply the number of active entrepreneurs. They need to understand the contribution these individuals make to economic growth and national competitiveness. Are these entrepreneurs creating jobs? Are they building innovative, global companies? These are important questions to ask,” states Professor Donna Kelly, one of the report authors.
While economies can facilitate people in starting businesses as a source of income, particularly when there are not enough jobs to meet demand, employed persons also benefit from new business opportunities. A supportive environment can encourage many to venture into entrepreneurship.
Societies should contain a variety of business phases and types, led by different types of entrepreneurs. Women’s participation in early-stage entrepreneurship relative to men’s differs widely around the globe. In the Republic of Korea there are five times more men than women entrepreneurs, while in Ghana there are more women than men starting businesses.
In 2010, GEM surveyed more than 175,000 people and over 3,000 national experts in 59 economies around the world. The report covers over 52% of the world’s population and 84% of the world’s GDP. This research is accomplished through an international network of national academic research teams, with global sponsors Babson College, USA and Universidad del Desarrollo, Chile.