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Hackers, makers and crowdfunders

– Lowering the barriers to entrepreneurship

Date: September 30, 2013

Lecturer: Professor Howard Aldrich, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

About the lecture: Technological and institutional changes in the past decade have substantially lowered the threshold for entrepreneurs wishing to start their own businesses, across a variety of industries. The "maker movement" and its associated hacker spaces have brought high-quality craft work within reach of many people, and crowd funding has given them access to resources hitherto unavailable. Internet-based marketing and distribution platforms, such as Etsy, have broadened the reach of small firms. And cloud-based business services mean that small businesses can outsource many operating processes to others. The result is potentially revolutionary for entrepreneurship. However, these developments may not have changed the fundamental inequalities that still characterize modern capitalist societies.

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