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ABSTRACT. An increasing number of studies are analyzing the roles of personal skills and social contacts in transnational immigrant entrepreneurship. However, whether the findings from extant research on immigrant entrepreneurs with a transnational business (TIEs) are peculiar to this particular group or applicable to all immigrant entrepreneurs (DIEs) remains unclear. To fill this research gap, this article summarizes previous findings on the use of personal skills and social networks by reviewing previous literature. The findings of this review indicate that previous studies show fairly similar results, albeit with some differences. TIEs appear to have slightly better personal skills (e.g., linguistic skills), higher and more business-related levels of education and better work experience. Regarding social contacts, TIEs’ networks are more extended geographically, which is relevant because social contacts often provide key support (informational and working aid) for the internationalization of the business. pp. 1–21

Keywords: personal skills; immigrant entrepreneurship; social networks; small business; transnational entrepreneurship
JEL Codes: A14; F22; M20

Giacomo Solano
University of Milan-Bicocca,
University of Technology
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