Challenges of building entrepreneurial ecosystems in peripheral places

Zimu Xu, Stephen Dobson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    35 Citations (Scopus)
    259 Downloads (Pure)


    The purpose of this paper is to investigate challenges of building entrepreneurial ecosystems in peripheral places. The entrepreneurial ecosystem concept is developing a rising popularity among both academics and policymakers in recent years where much of the attention has been put in major urban cities. However, on the way to achieve balanced growth and equity, peripheral places should not be neglected. Thus, this paper links literature on ecosystem with peripheral region studies in creating a conceptual framework of developing entrepreneurial ecosystems in peripheral places.


    The paper first reviews literature on entrepreneurial ecosystems and challenges that peripheral places facing in particular. Then, taking into consideration of literature from both fields, a conceptual framework is developed. In order to better illustrate the framework, a case study on Guildford’s digital gaming industry is reviewed based on secondary data.

    Though facing various challenges such as smallness, remoteness and lack of resources, peripheral places can take advantage of the digital technology and build an entrepreneurial ecosystem of its own kind through holistic collaborative approach to tackle issues around finance, talents, socio-culture environment, infrastructure, markets and policy.

    The paper is among the first to focus on developing a holistic conceptual framework in building entrepreneurial ecosystems in peripheral areas. It can lead to a range of further research topics and contribute to develop viable practices particularly for policymakers.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)408-430
    Number of pages23
    JournalJournal of Entrepreneurship and Public Policy
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Sept 2019

    Bibliographical note

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    • Entrepreneurial ecosystem
    • Entrepreneurship policy
    • Games industry
    • Peripheral places
    • Rural area
    • Rural entrepreneurship

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Business and International Management
    • Urban Studies
    • Strategy and Management


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