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The ineffectiveness of entrepreneurship policy : is policy formulation to blame?

Arshed, Norin and Carter, Sara and Mason, Colin (2015) The ineffectiveness of entrepreneurship policy : is policy formulation to blame? Small Business Economics, 43 (3). pp. 639-659. ISSN 0921-898X

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    Abstract

    Entrepreneurship policy has been criticised for its lack of effectiveness. Some scholars, such as Scott Shane in this journal, have argued that it is ‘bad’ public policy. But this simply begs the question why the legislative process should generate bad policy? To answer this question this study examines the UK’s enterprise policy process in the 2009–2010 period. It suggests that a key factor for the ineffectiveness of policy is how it is formulated. This stage in the policy process is seldom visible to those outside of government departments and has been largely ignored by prior research. The application of institutional theory provides a detailed theoretical understanding of the actors and the process by which enterprise policy is formulated. We find that by opening up the ‘black box’ of enterprise policy formulation, the process is dominated by powerful actors who govern the process with their interests.