Winner of Best Paper Rural Enterprise ISBE 2014

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)


    Remote Entrepreneurs: where nowhere is somewhere.Our paper on remote rural entrepreneurship wins ‘best paper’ in the ISBE rural enterprise stream, in Manchester, 2014. This work continues from last year’s success in Cardiff, 2013 which also won ‘best paper’ in the rural enterprise stream and has fed into several publications and wider research agenda. Key conclusions from this paper include our focus on:the complex nature of enterprise and entrepreneurship in island contexts – layered and crucially – iportant to continue to engage with enterprise as ‘historical’;an agenda for deepening the research on conflicts, trust and cooperation, strong and weak ties and networks;to avoid a simple/uncritical ‘urban-centric’ transfer of sectoral and national strategies and policies to such peripheral and marginal regions as small, remote islands;research demands further exploration of behaviours and attitudes to small rural island enterprise and entrepreneurship both from within and without the local environment;and considers how concepts of the ‘other’ defines and informs wider debates and discourse;Scale of impact for – and by – remote rural context is a key factor to critique.For further reading and research outputs relating to this work see:Kathryn A. Burnett and Mike Danson (2017) ‘Enterprise and Entrepreneurship on Islands and Remote Rural Environments’ Special Issues on Rural Enterprise, International Journal of Entrepreneurship & Innovation Vol. 18(1), pp. 25–35 DOI: 10.1177/1465750316686237Kathryn A. Burnett and Mike Danson. (2016) ‘Sustainability and Small Enterprises in Scotland’s Remote Rural ‘Margins’, Special Issues on Rural Enterprise, Local Economy Vol. 31, No. 5, pp. 539-553. Danson , , Kathryn Burnett , (2014), Enterprise and Entrepreneurship on Islands, in Colette Henry , Gerard Mcelwee (ed.) Exploring Rural Enterprise: New Perspectives on Research, Policy & Practice (Contemporary Issues in Entrepreneurship Research, Volume 4) Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.151 – 174 10.1108/S2040-724620140000004007Kathryn A. Burnett, Mike Danson, (2004) “Adding or subtracting value?: Constructions of rurality and Scottish quality food promotion”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. 10 Issue: 6, pp.384-403, doi: 10.1108/13552550410564716
    Paper abstract:

    Remote Entrepreneurs: where nowhere is somewhere.

    Purpose of this paper

    This paper offers an examination of entrepreneurship remoteness issues and opportunities with reference to the particular context of Scottish island and remote rural experience.


    The research, policy and practice literature on island and remote enterprises and entrepreneurs is reviewed, taking Scotland as a focus within European and global contexts. The role and activities of agencies and strategies, at EU, UK, Scottish and regional levels is introduced given their particular relevance in such remote and often isolated communities. The paper will also reference interview accounts and discourse from selected cases.


    The significance of the dominant paradigm founded on agglomeration, clusters, connectivity, proximity and competitiveness in the peripheralisation of those establishing and running businesses on islands and other remote rural locations is addressed. Particular questions are raised in respect of the discourse and nature of ‘remote’ in wider academic and policy context.

    What is original/value of paper

    Although there has been increasing interest in rural enterprises, relatively little has been written on enterprise and entrepreneurship in the specific environments of islands and remote mainland locations. As well as having all the issues facing SMEs and new start-ups of rural areas anywhere, enterprises in such areas tend to face different, additional and exaggerated problems. However, there is but sparse material published on these firms nor how entrepreneurs and agencies cope with the harsher business environment.

    Degree of recognitionInternational

    Awarded at event

    Event titleISBE 2014 - 37th Annual Conference of the Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship
    LocationManchester Conference Centre, Manchester, United KingdomShow on map
    Period5 Nov 2014 → 6 Nov 2014


    • remote
    • rural
    • enterprise
    • community
    • Scotland
    • Scottish
    • islands
    • SMEs
    • representation
    • Hebrides
    • Cultural Economy