Uncoupling Enterprise Culture from Capitalism: Some Lessons from Moscow
Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, Vol. 8 No. 2, 2014, pp. 111-125.
15 Pages Posted: 27 Dec 2015
Date Written: 2014
Purpose – The aim of this paper is to contribute to the literature that has sought to deconstruct this ideologically driven depiction by demonstrating how the existent enterprise culture in post-Soviet spaces not only challenges the depiction of the entrepreneur as a heroic icon of the legitimate capitalist culture but also opens up the feasibility of alternative futures beyond legitimate profit-driven capitalism. The starting point of this paper is that the enterprise culture is often viewed as inextricably related to the legitimate capitalist economy.
Design/methodology/approach – To unravel the nature of the enterprise culture in lived practice, this paper reports a 2006 survey involving face-to-face interviews with 90 entrepreneurs in Moscow.
Findings – Only 7 per cent of the Muscovite entrepreneurs surveyed pursue profit-driven legitimate entrepreneurship. The vast majority adopts social goals to varying degrees and operates wholly or partially in the informal economy. The outcome is to challenge the depiction of an enterprise culture and capitalism as inextricably inter-related and to open up entrepreneurship and enterprise culture in this post-Soviet space to re-signification as demonstrative of the feasibility of imagining and enacting alternative futures beyond capitalism.
Research limitations/implications – These findings are tentative, as they are based on a small-scale study of just one post-socialist city. Further research is now required to analyse whether the lived practices of entrepreneurship and enterprise cultures are similarly diverse in other post-Soviet spaces as well as beyond.
Originality/value – This is the first paper to evaluate critically the assumption that enterprise culture is a part of the legitimate capitalist economy in post-Soviet spaces.
Keywords: Russia, Informal economy, Social entrepreneurship, Enterprise culture, Moscow, Post-socialist societies
JEL Classification: H26, J46, J48, K34, K42, O17, P2, P3
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation