The Comparative Liberty-Dignity Context of Innovative Immigrant Entrepreneurship

Part of the Mercatus Studies in Political and Social Economy book series (MSPSE)


This chapter combines the concept of “entrepreneurial alertness” (Kirzner in Competition and Entrepreneurship. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1978) with the bourgeois liberty and dignity perspective on modern growth (McCloskey in Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can’t Explain the Modern World. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2011) to propose a comparative liberty-dignity framework for the allocation of creative (or innovative) immigrant entrepreneurship in the world. Assuming that both economic freedom and social honor matter, the conjecture is that the allocation of the global supply of creative entrepreneurs is a function of the relative differences across institutional and cultural contexts in the world and the differential payoffs associated with them. The direction of the flows of immigrant entrepreneurs is from countries with low degrees of liberty to countries with high degrees of liberty on the one side, and from cultures with low dignity to cultures with high dignity conferred to entrepreneurs, on the other side. Empirical illustrations, with net migration data from the World Bank and cultural-social data from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, are used to investigate the strength of the relationships in the comparative liberty-dignity conjecture. The data seem to support that creative immigrant entrepreneurs are more likely to migrate towards destinations with high degrees of economic freedom and societal support towards the novelties and opportunities they create.


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© The Author(s) 2021

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Business and EconomicsUrsinus CollegeCollegevilleUSA

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