Organizational sponsorship in contexts of poverty

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Journal of Management Studies


Organizational sponsors seek to help new ventures survive and thrive, in large part by providing facilitating learning among entrepreneurs. As such, organizational sponsorship has been used as a tool in the alleviation of poverty. The purpose of this study is to better understand why some entrepreneurs in the context of poverty benefit from organizational sponsorship more than others. We explore this question with 24 months of pre- and post-intervention sales data for 151 ventures in an organizational sponsorship program in Central America. We find that greater access to learning opportunities may not be the critical driver of entrepreneurial growth. Rather, we find that the constraints from prior experience and knowledge are more important predictors of learning. Finally, we find that within this context women benefit less from organizational sponsorship than men. These findings contribute to a better understanding of the mechanisms associated with organizational sponsorship in the context of desperate poverty, and have important implications for organizational sponsors seeking to alleviate poverty.



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