A Model of Destructive Entrepreneurship: Insight for Conflict and Postconflict Recovery

Sameeksha Desai*, Zoltan J. Acs, Utz Weitzel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The research on entrepreneurship as an economic phenomenon often assumes its desirability as a driver of economic development and growth. However, entrepreneurial talent can be allocated among productive, unproductive and destructive activities. This allocation has important implications in the developing world, particularly for countries hosting conflict or recovering from conflict. The allocation of entrepreneurship is theorized as driven by institutions. Although the trade-off between productive and unproductive entrepreneurship has been examined, destructive entrepreneurship has been largely ignored. We build from existing theory and define destructive entrepreneurship as wealth destroying. We propose three assumptions to develop a model of destructive entrepreneurship that presents the mechanisms through which entrepreneurial talent behaves in this manner. We present four key propositions on the nature and behavior of destructive entrepreneurship. We conclude by identifying research agendas and policy streams, with a focus on relevance to conflict and postconflict recovery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-40
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of conflict resolution
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • allocation
  • conflict
  • destructive entrepreneurship
  • incentives
  • institutions
  • postconflict recovery
  • productive
  • rent-seeking
  • unproductive


Dive into the research topics of 'A Model of Destructive Entrepreneurship: Insight for Conflict and Postconflict Recovery'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this