Acta Universitatis Danubius. Œconomica, Vol 12, No 5 (2016)

Navigating the role of business incubators: A Review on the current literature on Business Incubation in South Africa

Thobekani Lose, Zinzi Nxopo, Eugine Maziriri, Welcome Madinga


Business incubators (BIs) are a significant tool in promoting the development of entrepreneurial firms, technology-based growth firms and economic growth in South Africa. The study reviewed the current literature on business incubation in South Africa. Business incubators in South Africa emerged as a popular strategy in the 1990s and most of current literature was established in the same time. However, the current literature is still limited. The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of current knowledge on the role and effectiveness of business incubation in supporting the development of new small startup businesses. The quantitative and qualitative literature published by the academic and practitioner communities is reviewed. The searches indicated that incubation has encouraged many studies in South Africa. The studies can be categorised under the following themes: the role and contribution of incubators, success factors for business incubation, obstacles, and the relationship between incubators and entrepreneurship. The areas for further research are suggested. Two major areas that new research can explore focus on the creation of the model and self-sustainability of business incubators.


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