Diversity, economic development and new migrant entrepreneurs

Trevor Jones, Ram Monder, Maria Villares-Varela

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


How do migrant entrepreneurs contribute to economic development? The growing attention to the contribution that migrants make tends to be skewed towards their economic role. Drawing on interviews with 49 new migrant business owners and 60 workers in the West Midlands, UK, we argue that benefits of diversity should be explored beyond the economic dividend. We engage with key theoretical developments in the fields of migrant entrepreneurship and diversity economics, and show that migrant entrepreneurs are characterised by the polarisation of their performance between high fliers and survival entrepreneurs. Despite their overall resource poverty, migrant entrepreneurs on the lower level create employment for their locality, cater to community needs and cushion the social incorporation of new communities in British society. We argue that debates around the benefits of diversity should incorporate not only economic growth, but also its impact on social processes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)960-976
Number of pages17
JournalUrban Studies
Issue number5
Early online date30 Apr 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019

Bibliographical note

© Sage 2018. The final publication is available via Sage at http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0042098018765382


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