ABSTRACT FROM THE JSFB. SUBSCRIBERS CAN READ THE FULL ARTICLE IN THE MAY 2014 EDITION
Co-Authored by Robert D. Lamb and Sadika Hameed, Program on Crisis, Conflict and Cooperation at the Center for Strategic and International Studies
A teenage girl sews some clothes and sells them to a vendor at the local market, grows her business, and eventually becomes the main employer in her community. An inspiring story, but nothing out of the ordinary for those who study entrepreneurship – until you learn she built her successful manufacturing collective in secret, just after the Taliban took control of her community in Afghanistan. Similar stories play out wherever a government is abusive, corrupt, weak, or nonexistent – unusually difficult environments, with high violence, crime, and coercion, and low incomes and quality of life. These are the most difficult of the frontier markets. Even investors who seek frontier opportunities tend to avoid them. But that just means opportunities are being missed.