Massaran Bibi Traore Sarr

Postgraduate Research Student


Massaran Dite Bibi Traore Sarr, Gavin Michael Hilson, Abigail Hilson (2024)Reimagining Entrepreneurship in the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining Sector: Fresh Insights from Sub-Saharan Africa, In: Africa journal of management Routledge

This paper examines the dynamics of entrepreneurship in the artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) sector, focusing on the case of sub-Saharan Africa. Despite being the region’s most important rural nonfarm activity, and generating finance that sustains a sizable portion of its subsistence/smallholder agricultural economy, ASM has barely featured in the business and management literature. It has rather been scholars from other disciplines who have shared opinions on the individuals who pursue work in this sector and why. They are in broad agreement that in sub-Saharan Africa, ASM sites attract, at the one extreme, people who are desperate for income (the ‘poverty-driven’ category) and, at the other extreme, individuals motivated by the possibility of becoming wealthy (the ‘get-rich quick’ category). These two narratives map, virtually wholesale, on to the necessity-based-opportunity-based typology of entrepreneurship that business and management scholars have interrogated for decades. The paper fuses these narratives with the typology, with the goal of showcasing ASM within an evolving body of literature on entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa. It then draws on a case study of Kéniéba District (Mali), the location of one of the region’s more dynamic gold-panning industries, to articulate more clearly the sector’s necessity-based and opportunity-based categories of entrepreneur.