What Have We Learned from a Decade of Manufacturing Enterprise Surveys in Africa?

43 Pages Posted: 13 Jan 2006

See all articles by Arne Bigsten

Arne Bigsten

University of Gothenburg

Måns Söderbom

University of Oxford - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: December 2005


In the early 1990s the World Bank launched the Regional Program on Enterprise Development in several African countries, a key component of which was the collection of manufacturing firm-level data. In this paper the authors review the research based on the data sets generated by these and subsequent firm surveys in Africa, with a special view to what they think are the most important policy implications. The authors survey the research on the African business environment, focusing on market size, risk, access to credit, labor, and infrastructure. They cover the research on how firms choose to organize themselves and how firms do business. They review the research on firm performance, including firm growth, investment and technology acquisition, and exports. They conclude with an extended discussion of the policy lessons.

Keywords: African manufacturing, economic performance, survey data.

JEL Classification: D21, O12, O14

Suggested Citation

Bigsten, Arne and Soderbom, Mans, What Have We Learned from a Decade of Manufacturing Enterprise Surveys in Africa? (December 2005). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 3798. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=875441

Arne Bigsten (Contact Author)

University of Gothenburg ( email )

Box 640
SE 405 30 Gothenburg

HOME PAGE: http://www.hgu.gu.se/item.aspx?id=2619

Mans Soderbom

University of Oxford - Department of Economics ( email )

Manor Road Building
Manor Road
Oxford, OX1 3BJ
United Kingdom
+44-(0)1865 271084 (Phone)
+44-(0)1865 281447 (Fax)

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