Eversole, R, Urban Micro: reflections on a decade of microenterprise development in a Bolivian city, Journal of Latin American Urban Studies, Department of History, St. John's University, Jamaica, 8, pp. 17-33. (2007) [Magazine Article]
Copyright 2007 Journal of Latin American Urban Studies
Official URL: http://depts.washington.edu/jlaus/pastissues.html
The mid-1990s in Bolivia were filled with great interest in the potential of microenterprise to provide a solution to urban poverty. Microcredit was new and seized upon for its promise to provide a launching point for microenterprises. The older discourse of the informal economy (Hart 1973) was disappearing, the new optimism of enterprise - and the potential of enterprise dcvelopment through microfinance - was taking its place, both locally and internationally (see e.g. Hulme and Mosley 1996, Harper and Finnegan 1998, Rhyne 2001). For Bolivia, a country with a notably large urban informal sector, the shift attracted significant attention.
From being seen as marginal actors in urban economies - the petty-commodity producers, peasants in cities or surplus labourers eking out a subsistence livelihood on the urban fringe (see e.g. Nun. Marin and Mumlis 1967, Roberts 1978, Babb 1989, or from a more critical perspective, Binford and Cook 199 1) - the owner-operators of micro-scale businesses were elevated to the centre of the conceptual economy. They generated employment, they improved household income, they strengthened local economies in poor areas, and they were not the problem but the solution.
|Item Type:||Magazine Article|
|Keywords:||Bolivia, microenterprise, economy, employment, development|
|Research Division:||Studies in Human Society|
|Research Field:||Social and Cultural Anthropology|
|Objective Division:||Law, Politics and Community Services|
|Objective Group:||Community Service (excl. Work)|
|Objective Field:||Ethnicity, Multiculturalism and Migrant Development and Welfare|
|Author:||Eversole, R (Professor Robyn Eversole)|
|Deposited By:||Institute for Regional Development|
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