Project presentations on the website

Every project supported by Gebert Rüf Stiftung is made accessible with a web presentation that informs about the core data of the project. With this public presentation, the foundation publishes the funding results achieved and contributes to the communication of science to society.


The Emergence and Evolution of Entrepreneurship in Georgia, phase 3 – ASCN 2015


Für den Inhalt der Angaben zeichnet die Projektleitung verantwortlich.


Dieses von der Gebert Rüf Stiftung geförderte Projekt wird von folgenden weiteren Projektpartnern mitgetragen: Interfakultäres Institut für Ost- und Ostmitteleuropa IIOOE der Universität Freiburg; Geostat, Georgia; Economic Policy Research Center, Georgia

Project data

  • Project no: GRS-014/15 
  • Amount of funding: CHF 30'000 
  • Approved: 23.01.2015 
  • Duration: 04.2015 - 03.2016 
  • Area of activity:  ASCN, 2009 - 2018

Project management

Project description

This research project examines entrepreneurial dynamics in Georgia through a longitudinal study following both potential and existing entrepreneurs. «Entrepreneurship» is defined here as a process from intention to action that may lead to the creation of an enterprise (formal or informal). Understood in this way, it should therefore be studied from an evolutionary perspective and, in consequence, should grasp the following points:

1. How entrepreneurs move from the so-called «unobserved» to the observed economy (the emergence of entrepreneurs);
2. The development and growth of enterprises, including micro-enterprises (the evolution of enterprises).

In order to accomplish this, the project demands sequential observations from a selected group of respondents. These participants are then asked the same questions about the visions they have, obstacles they face and the possibility of enhancing factors from which they benefit. This research proposal focuses on entrepreneurship (embedded or not embedded within enterprises) and how it interacts with institutional, economic, cultural and social environments. In other words, the project attempts to decipher the different barriers and incentives (psychological, sociological, environmental and material) on the road to entrepreneurship. The interplay between available resources, perceived opportunities and socio-economic institutions, in conjunction with the motivation and vision of entrepreneurs, together shape 'entrepreneurship' as it is emerging in Georgia.

What is special about the project?

Both the object of the research and the way it will be carried out makes this project special.
1. It researches a neglected layer of the Georgian economic landscape.
(even though self-employment constitutes half of the work force of Georgia and account to about 18% of GDP, there are few data and information about that important layer of the Georgian economic landscape).
2. It does so with a specific methodology: longitudinal panel observation is a methodology that will shed light on dynamics of entrepreneurship.
Moreover, as a sort of «observatory of entrepreneurship» in transition countries, this project is interdisciplinary and has a great potential to build synergies with other social sciences disciplines.


The fourth round of observations was carried out in Mai 2015. Geostat, the Georgian Statistical Agency interviewed, for each round, 350 self-employed and 250 micro and small enterprises in three regions: Tbilisi, Kakheti and Adjara. It is the first time that specific data on self-employed and small enterprises have been gathered. It gave the occasion to present the results of the study in seminars and conferences in Tbilisi in October 2015. The results of this study were also useful for the newly established governmental body «Entrepreneurship Development Agency» (EDA) and evaluation of the Small Business Act Assessment conducted by the OECD. It highlighted the similarities between self-employed and micro enterprises in terms of soft skills (attitude toward risk taking, confidence, planning and visions) and in with regards to formality variables (having a bank account, holding accounting records, dealing with written terms of agreements). Yet they are not active in the same sectors and micro firms entrepreneurs are more educated. Policy strategies aiming to formalize the economy have to take this evidence into account.


Entrepreneurship in Georgia Caucasus Analytical Digest, ETHZ publication, No. 45, December 2012
Informal Sector in Georgia Caucasus Analytical Digest, ETHZ publication, No. 60, August 2015



Persons involved in the project

Philippe Rudaz, Phd candidate, project coordinator, University of Friboug

Last update to this project presentation  17.03.2022