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Entrepreneurship in Africa

Entrepreneurship research and education has developed to become a global subject. The CfE@VU also works globally through participating in multiple projects in Southeast Africa. The collaboration between African PHD students and Dutch university lecturers has led to interesting findings, which can be found on this page.


Albogast Kilangi
Dissertation: The Determinants of ICT Adoption and Usage among SMEs: The Case of the Tourism Sector in Tanzania
Emiel Eijdenberg
Dissertation: Small business growth in East African Least Developed Countries: Unravelling the role of the small business owners
Ernest Mwasalwiba
Dissertation: University Entrepreneurship
Education in Tanzania:Teaching Context, Students Profiles, Expectations and Outcomes
Nsubili Isaga 
Dissertation: Entrepreneurship and the growth of SMEs in the furniture industry in Tanzania
Shiferaw Muleta
Dissertation: Entrepreneurial behaviour and firm performance of Ethiopian tour operators
Progress Choongo
Dissertation: Determinants of sustainable entrepreneurship practices in small and medium firms in Zambia
Mwansa Chabala
Dissertation: Determinants of growth of small and medium enterprises in Zambia
Kimeu Muindi
Dissertation: Entrepreneurial development and poverty alleviation: Sustainable livelihood strategies adopted by women entrepreneurs in Western and South Eastern Kenya
Gorah Abdallah
Dissertation: Factors motivating entrepreneurs from informal small business to shift to formal small business: A case study of Tanzania
Rael Adhiambo Onyango
Dissertation: Effects of Value Chain Financing on the Performance of Small Enterprises in the Great Lakes Region, Kenya

CfE@VU is involved in entrepreneurship research and education in Southeast African countries (mainly Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia). The main activities are supervision of PhDs and training of university lecturers. Students from the joint MSc Entrepreneurship also participate in these projects, with fieldwork for their MSc thesis.

PhD biographies

  • Mr. Progress Choongo

    Progress Choongo is a lecturer at Copperbelt University in the School of Business in Kitwe, Zambia. He completed his Bachelor’s degree in Production Management at Copperbelt University in 2000. Thereafter, he worked in the capacities of Planning and Quality Control officer and Project Manager for Meltcast Engineering in Zambia. In 2007, he obtained a Master’s degree in Project Management from Leeds University in the United Kingdom. He joined Copperbelt University in 2008. Before starting his PhD at VU Amsterdam in February 2012, he was the Coordinator of postgraduate studies in the School of Business.

    He is currently studying for a PhD at VU Amsterdam, Department of Management & Organization (M&O). His area of study is entrepreneurship. His topic of study is “Sustainable Entrepreneurship in Zambia”. His research interest includes entrepreneurship, sustainability, corporate social responsibility (CSR) and other topics.

  • Mr. Shiferaw Muleta

    Shiferaw Muleta is a PhD researcher of entrepreneurship and innovation in developing countries at the Center for Entrepreneurship of the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. His PhD research, titled, "Entrepreneurial behaviour and firm performance of Ethiopian tour operators" and under the supervision of Enno Masurel and co-supervision of Leo Paas and Henk Van den Heuvel, is almost completed and the public defense will be held in April 2017.

    Shiferaw's PhD research focuses on the opportunity identification and exploitation behaviour of small business owners and their eventual effects on firm performance by providing empirical evidences from the tourism sector in Ethiopia. Shiferaw’s PhD is funded by NUFFIC through its STRONGBOW project (NICHE 023).

    Before joining VU Amsterdam to pursue his PhD in September 2012, Shiferaw has been a lecturer in Ethiopia under College of Development Studies at Addis Ababa University (AAU) where he obtained his master’s degree. His research interest includes sustainable entrepreneurship, innovation and performance of small businesses, small business development and management, tourism and development, community-based-tourism and natural resources management.

  • Mr. Gorah Abdallah

    Identification and exploitation of entrepreneurial opportunities

    The concept of entrepreneurship can be traced back to the eighteen century where it was associated with individuals doing businesses under uncertainty and risk (Long, 1983). Later, due to advancement in knowledge, the term entrepreneurship became widely used to cover different meanings depending on the application and purposes of the study (Salgado-Banda, 2007). According to Peneder (2009), entrepreneurship can be categorized into branches of economics, occupational and behavioural aspects. He further explained that the behavioural theory of entrepreneurship is focused on the pursuit and exploitation of entrepreneurial opportunities. Basically, scholars describe the identification and exploitation of entrepreneurial opportunities as the heart of entrepreneurship (Korsgaard, 2011).

  • Mr. Kimeu Muindi

    Kimeu Muindi is a lecturer of Entrepreneurship at the School of Human Resource Development Moi University, Eldoret, Kenya, Department of Entrepreneurship and Quantitative studies. He holds a Master of science in Entrepreneurship from Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology and currently a Phd researcher at Center for Entrepreneurship @ VU, at the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Department of Management & Organization of VU Amsterdam.

    His PhD dissertation is on the Antecedents of Sustainable Livelihoods in Entrepreneurship, with particular focus on Female entrepreneurs in Kenya, his current research focuses on the effects entrepreneurial concepts such as entrepreneurial competence, entrepreneurial orientation and the role of incremental innovation towards entrepreneurial performance of firms in the trade sector.

  • Mr. Mwansa Chabala

    Mwansa is currently studying for a PhD at VU Amsterdam, at the department of Management & Organization (M&O). He is a lecturer at the Copperbelt University in the School of Business in Kitwe, Zambia. He studied Master of Science in Supply Chain Management at Coventry University in England and Bachelor of Science in Production Management at Copperbelt University in Zambia.

    His main research focus is Entrepreneurship and Small firm growth. His current research specifically focuses on small firm growth in developing countries. The first phase involved investigating how to measure small firm growth in LDCs and analysis of determinants of small business growth. As part of this study, he developed and validating a scale that can be used to measure small firm growth considering the contextual issues related to small firms and entrepreneurs in LDCs. In the second phase focus on the getting deeper insights on determinants of small firms grow in LDCs by analyzing the effects of factors such as motivation, entrepreneurial orientation, entrepreneurial alertness and entrepreneurial passion.