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Reverse entrepreneurship and integration in poor areas of China: Case studies of tourism entrepreneurship in Ganzi Tibetan Region of Sichuan

Wu, Bin; Geng, Baojiang; Wang, Yi; Scott McCabe, Scott; Liao, Lu; Zeng, Liping; Deng, Biyi


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Senior Research Fellow

Baojiang Geng

Yi Wang

Scott Scott McCabe

Lu Liao

Liping Zeng

Biyi Deng


In the context of urbanisation and the decline of the countryside, reverse entrepreneurship cannot be separated from integration, referring to a process of mutual trust and cooperation between reverse (returnee or immigrant from urban areas) entrepreneur, host community and external stakeholders for sustainable livelihoods. With a geographic focus on poor areas of China, this paper aims to reveal key factors behind successful initiatives of reverse entrepreneurship to address challenges facing local communities, and pathways for mobilising and effectively using various resources, both internally and externally. These objectives are addressed through multiple cases of tourism development in Ganzi, a Tibetan Minority Prefecture of Sichuan. This paper contributes to the literature on entrepreneurial integration to debates on reverse entrepreneurship in three aspects. Firstly, entrepreneurial integration starts from social embeddedness, interconnecting and interacting between reverse entrepreneur(s) and the host community to understand local challenges and share a new vision for sustainable livelihoods. Secondly, entrepreneurial integration is essentially an innovation platform to develop or enhance social capital (both bonding and bridging) for mobilising and effective use of critical resources. Finally, the study outlines five pathways of tourism entrepreneurship, which reflects variations in livelihood strategy, critical capitals, business models, innovation diffusion and application potential.


Wu, B., Geng, B., Wang, Y., Scott McCabe, S., Liao, L., Zeng, L., & Deng, B. (2022). Reverse entrepreneurship and integration in poor areas of China: Case studies of tourism entrepreneurship in Ganzi Tibetan Region of Sichuan. Journal of Rural Studies, 96, 358-368.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 14, 2022
Online Publication Date Nov 25, 2022
Publication Date Dec 1, 2022
Deposit Date Dec 21, 2022
Publicly Available Date May 26, 2024
Journal Journal of Rural Studies
Print ISSN 0743-0167
Electronic ISSN 1873-1392
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 96
Pages 358-368
Keywords reverse entrepreneurship; entrepreneurial integration; tourism development; poor areas of China; case studies
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