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Kauffman: Entrepreneurship rebounding, mega trends shaping future

February 16, 2017

Entrepreneurship is on the rebound following a “Great Recession hangover,” according to a new study by the Kauffman Foundation, but turbulent shifts will affect its shape in the coming years. During its eighth annual State of Entrepreneurship address in Washington D.C. this morning, Wendy Guillies, Kauffman president and CEO, outlined how, despite the resurgence, new firm formation remains in a long-term deficit and called for a “national wakeup call.”

The Kauffman report, Zero Barriers: Three Mega Trends Shaping the Future of Entrepreneurship, reveals three trends it says are fundamentally reshaping entrepreneurship in America:

  • New demographics: while the U.S. is becoming more racially diverse, that diversity is not reflected in entrepreneurs with underrepresentation of women and minority groups hurting the economy by reducing the number of businesses and jobs they would create.
  • New map of entrepreneurship: entrepreneurial endeavors are increasingly taking place in urban and suburban areas and less frequently in smaller metros and rural areas.
  • New nature of entrepreneurship: technology has made the activity of starting and scaling up a business different as fewer jobs are created as companies are able to reach a higher scale in terms of revenue without having to scale employment in the same manner. However, technology also enables greater accessibility and opportunities through platforms that lower barriers to entry.

To respond to these trends, the Kauffman Foundation is a launching a new “Zero Barriers to Startup” initiative to identify large and small barriers to entrepreneurship and develop solutions to reverse the decline.