Posted: 28 Mar 2009 Last revised: 13 Aug 2016
Date Written: February 1, 2009
It is the purpose of this study to help shed light on the entrepreneurship, entrepreneurs and enterprise growth in Wenzhou. We rely on a probabilistic firm survey that we carried out in Wenzhou in early 2006 for three industries: shoes, eyeglasses and general equipment. We fielded a formal survey, but we also asked many informal questions in addition, which helps us to enrich our story. In our survey we focused on getting detailed firm histories to learn about how the firms started and grew. We focused on the origins of the firms, including prior firms that may have been antecedents. We collected information on whom the founders were, how many, their relationships with each other, and their background in terms of experience and other human capital. We collected detailed information on how they financed their start, and how they financed their expansion. We also have detailed information on the sources of technology into the firms, particularly whether it was Chinese or imported and whether the firms were getting technical instructions from foreign firms they may have been exporting to. We also have detailed information on markets, especially how markets and how export markets were found. We also collected detailed information about explicit assistance that came from governments, local and/or central. Finally we also interviewed workers at each firm: managers, skilled workers such as designers, and production workers. In this paper we survey some the main results.
JEL Classification: O12, O14, O53
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Strauss, John and Qian, Yanmin Edward and Shen, Minggao and Liu, Dong and Majbouri, Mahdi and Sun, Qi and Ying, Qianfan and Zhu, Yi, Private Sector Industrialization in China: Evidence from Wenzhou (February 1, 2009). IEPR Working Paper No. 09.01. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1346226 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1346226