LECTURE: Mapping Africa’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

15 Aug

Mellena Haile speaks to Mieko Ikegame of the U.N.

Africa’s entrepreneurs get far too little credit for their contributions to economic growth, and too little help from the international community to access capital and find partners.  The Kauffman Foundation is using mobile phones to map the evolution ofAfrica’s entrepreneurial networks, and study the factors that help or hinder entrepreneurs.

Mellena Haile, a researcher from the Foundation, spoke about this program, called E-Pulse, at a DRI and Africa House luncheon on August 15. E-Pulse will survey entrepreneurs in over 50 African countries about their business activities via text message. The data will be used to mapAfrica’s “entrepreneurial ecosystems,” and to help entrepreneurs connect with one another.

The Kauffman Foundation’s research in Africa is founded on Expeditionary Economics, which seeks to develops indigenous entrepreneurship and spur economic growth in post-conflict countries.