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Refugees and Entrepreneurship

Refugees and Entrepreneurship



Project coordinator

Åbo Akademi

Funded by

  • Åbo Akademi
  • Åbo Akademi University’s part of the budget

    172 000 euros

    Refugees and Entrepreneurship

    More than 80 million people have been forced to flee their homes because of conflict or persecution (UNHCR, 2020). Many of these refugees find themselves in refugee camps where they are forced to spend their lives, and the need for providing their livelihood is great.

    After many years, a minority of them are able to start a new life in Europe. However, compared to immigrants in general, the refugee group faces large obstacles in the labour market. The main research question for this research project is therefore, how entrepreneurship could help refugees to form the conditions in the refugee camps in order to provide for a better livelihood, but also for a more effective integration when resettled in a country in Europe. More specifically, the research will focus on:

    • analysing the general situation regarding entrepreneurship and how the context impacts on entrepreneurship in refugee camps
    • analysing which technology platforms could help refugees develop their entrepreneurial skills in the refugee camps
    • analysing how entrepreneurship education could be integrated in order to provide future entrepreneurs the possibility to further develop their skills in the refugee camps, but also when resettled in Europe.

    As presented above, this research project is divided into three themes. Firstly, the aim is to create an overview and understanding of refugee’s situation regarding entrepreneurship in general. Secondly, to create the conditions for developing entrepreneurship in the refugee camp and finally, to integrate different measures to further develop the knowledge of entrepreneurship amongst the refugees in the refugee camps. The research project is led by Stefan Lång (Åbo Akademi University) in cooperation with several researchers from different departments at Åbo Akademi University, e.g. bla. Prof. Malin Brännback (International Marketing) Prof. Gunilla Widén (Information Studies) Associate Professor Jonas Lagerström (Ekonomics) och Maria Ivanova-Gongne (International Marketing)

    Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Refugees, Refugee camps, Business Models, Entrepreneurial Education

    Contact us

    Stefan Lång

    University Lecturer 

    School of Business and Economics

    Faculty of Social Sciences, Business and Economics, and Law