The analysis of entrepreneurial intention in rural area: lessons from a geosite in belitong geopark, indonesia

Bhinekawati, Risa (1); Nelloh, Liza Agustina Maureen (2) (2019). 'The analysis of entrepreneurial intention in rural area: lessons from a geosite in Belitong Geopark, Indonesia' Paper presented at the annual conference of the HDCA 2019, London, UK.



Current research on rural entrepreneurship are mostly being conducted in developed countries like USA (Newbery and Bosworth 2014), Malaysia (Dahalan, Jaafar and Rosdi, 2015) and Finland (Kibler 2013). There are numbers of research on the roles of geoparks in rural development, but specific research on rural entrepreneurship development are still needed (Yuliawati et al. 2016; Farsani, Coelho, and Costa 2012; Dowling and Newsome 2018). In the area of entrepreneurship, capability approach has been applied to develop conceptual framework on entrepreneurship capabilities (Wilson and Martin 2015), as well as on the relationship between entrepreneurship and human development (Gries and Naudé 2011) but empirical research is need to test the models. Besides, there are always open opportunities to apply capability approach approach in explaining the phenomena in the real setting (Alkire 2005; Robeyns 2005).

The development of people’s entrepreneurial capability sets and freedom may occur when people can actually turn their potential functionings into achieved functionings (Gries and Naudé 2011). This study extends previous research in rural entrepreneurship development by adopting capability approach and theory of planned behaviour the context of a Belitong geopark in Indonesia. A geosite called “Bukit Peramun” located in Aik Selumar Village of Belitong (2,736 inhabitants) was chosen as a case study to analyse whether entrepreneurship is considered as potential functionings by villagers; and why and how entrepreneurship as potential functionings is tranformed into achieved functionings. Currently Indonesia has 15 national geoparks where four of them are are recognised as global geopark among 140 global geoparks in 138 countries (UNESCO 2018).   Geoparks should be managed with integrated concept of environmental protection, education, and sustainable development involving local communities (UNESCO 2018), so it can contribute to poverty eradication, employmnet creation, and environmental preservation in rural areas of the world (Farsani, Coelho, and Costa 2012).   Specifically, this research has the following research objectives:

1) to understand whether the villagers view entrepreneurship as potential functionings by testing the relationships between social norms, subjective norms, perceived behavioural control and entrepreneurial intention.

2) to explore how entrepreneurship as potential functionings are developed into achieved functionings.

To obtain comprehensive results, this research applies a mixed method approach which is a combination of qualitative and quantitative research. We use structural equation modelling to test the relationship among variables of social norms, subjective norms, perceived behavioural control and entrepreneurial intention. Surveyors helped with distribution and data collection of a total 120 questionnaires in sub-villages of Aik Selumar, but only 100 questionnaires are qualified for statistical requirement. After we analyse the quantitive data, we conducted interview with community leader and 21 members of Aik Selumar community to explore how entrepreneurship as potential functionings become achieved functionings.

Our quantitative research reveals that Aik Selumar villagers perceive entrepreneurship as valuable doings and beings or potential functionings. The study finds the relationship between the influence of social norms over closer social circle like family and friends (subjective norms), individual’s perception on his/her entrepreneurial capabilities (perceived behavioral control), and his/her intention in becoming entrepreneurs. Our qualitative study finds, although villagers have entrepreneurial intention, they may not be able to convert all entrepreneurial opportunities into actions. Here, the agency of community leader as a change agent plays important roles in bridging villagers with access to skills, finance, and market, as well as in motivating rural people to work together in combining the opportunities, resources, capabilities, and aspirations in entrepreneurship (potential functionings) into entrepreneurial performance (achieved functionings).

This research contributes to the knowledge on capability approach discussion on rural entrepreneurship development, especially on how entrepreneurship as potential functionings evolve into achieved functionings. The lessons from this research can be applied to the practices of entrepreneurship development in other rural areas and geoparks. However, further research needs to be conducted to include more geosites for broader generalisability.

Key words: Belitong Geopark, Bukit Peramun, Capability Approach, Functionings, Rural Entrepreneurship, Theory of Planned Behaviour

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