Migrant entrepreneurs as cosmopolitan change agents:a Bourdieuan perspective on capital accumulation

Figueira, Catarina; Caselli, Giorgio and Theodorakopoulos, Nicholas Migrant entrepreneurs as cosmopolitan change agents:a Bourdieuan perspective on capital accumulation. Society and Business Review, 11 (3),

Abstract

Purpose : The aim of this paper is to provide novel insights into how the cosmopolitan mind-set can be fostered at a time of globalization by considering a group of social actors that has received scant attention in the literature on institutional change, notably migrant entrepreneurs. Design/methodology/approach : This is a conceptual study that draws on Bourdieu’s theory of capital to develop a set of testable propositions as to how the economic, cultural, social and symbolic capital endowments of migrant entrepreneurs shape their agency in bringing about cosmopolitan transformation. Findings : Together, migrant entrepreneurs endowed with higher levels of capital may act as institution reformers and promote the cosmopolitan mind-set by influencing the beliefs, incentives and behaviors of those embedded in more entrenched traditional institutions. Research limitations/implications : Our conceptual framework deals with only one of the many agents that may help bring about cosmopolitan change and is particularly well suited to a Western European context. Practical implications This conceptual paper provides a number of testable propositions that can be central to an empirical investigation into how the levels of capital possessed by migrant entrepreneurs affect their engagement in cosmopolitan change. Originality/value : The novelty of this paper lies in the development of a set of propositions that shows how divergent change toward a cosmopolitan vision might be engendered by spatially dispersed actors endowed with varying degrees of economic, cultural, social and symbolic capital.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/SBR-10-2015-0064
Divisions: Aston Business School > Work & organisational psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords: cosmopolitanism,capital accumulation,globalization,world citizenship,ethnic minority,migrant entrepreneurship

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