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Expatriate and Expat-preneur ecosystems – innovation spaces away from home

Book Chapter, published in 02/2021



This book chapter explains the role of expatriates for innovation spaces. Special consideration therein is given to a sub-set of expatriates: expat-preneurs, an intersection of two groups: expatriates and entrepreneurs. This typically highly innovative group of individuals is analyzed from various points of view, linking this research to concepts such as entrepreneurial personality, team diversity or social capital. These concepts help explain why this ecosystem of expat-preneurs seems to be capable of producing such innovative outcomes and at the same time link to some of the challenges, expatriates in general and expat-preneurs in particular are facing. The practical implementation of such ecosystems, also referred to as innovation spaces, is described on the examples of one outstanding expat-preneur hub: Singapore. Based on this example, the importance of optimal circumstances is discussed.

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About the Book Chapter

Expatriate and Expat-preneur ecosystems –
innovation spaces away from home

Ruthemeier A. (2021) Expatriate and Expat-Preneur Ecosystems: Innovation Spaces Away from Home. In: V. Nestle et al. (eds), Creating Innovation Spaces: Impulses for Start-ups and Established Companies in Global Competition, Springer International Publishing, ISBN 978-3-030-57641-7


Table of Content

1 Expatriates – who they are and why they matter

2 Ecosystems

2.1 Ecosystems and their relevance – an economic observation

2.2 Expatriate Ecosystem – challenges and chances

2.3 Expat-preneur Ecosystem – at the intersection of entrepreneurs and expatriates

3 Innovation in the Expatriate Ecosystem

3.1 Innovation and Start-Ups – Requirements and Circumstances

3.2 The Expatriate and Expat-preneur personality – prone to innovation and risk-affine

4 Examples of Expatriate Ecosystems

4.1 Singapore – innovation and expat hub, an easy place to do business

5 Lessons Learned and Outlook


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