Original Research

Network diversity structure, closeness and innovation of South African micro-entrepreneurs

Eliada Wosu Griffin-EL
South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences | Vol 17, No 3 | a415 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajems.v17i3.415 | © 2014 Eliada Wosu Griffin-EL | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 July 2012 | Published: 29 May 2014

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Abstract

This study qualitatively explores the embeddedness of the innovation process of South African microbusinesses by investigating how small local entrepreneurs in the Greater Johannesburg area utilise their social networks to source entrepreneurial value. A comparative grounded theory analysis enabled the original conceptualisation of Network Diversity Structure and formulates the central proposition that the network dimensions of diversity and closeness enable the innovation process among manufacturing microbusinesses more so than in service microbusinesses. Furthermore, the study proposes that both a structural and relational/experiential dimension of closeness, enables micro-entrepreneurs to create meaning and knowledge collaboratively with other entrepreneurs and actors. This socially facilitated process of exchanging ideas, information, and resources is central to the innovation process of firms traditionally limited by both their size and historical social institutions.

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Crossref Citations

1. The Use of the Internet and Social Media by Microenterprises in South Africa
Obey Dzomonda, Olawale Fatoki, Olabanji Oni, Mgoako Prudence Bosch
Journal of Social Sciences  vol: 52  issue: 1-3  first page: 58  year: 2017  
doi: 10.1080/09718923.2017.1336012