Socio-cultural factors as driving forces of rural entrepreneurship in Oman

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The Omani government’s current drive towards economic diversification is focused on the expansion of entrepreneurial activities to power the country’s socio-economic development. However, the participation rate of the indigenous population in such activities remains low. This paper studies the indigenous value system and behavioral mechanisms which drive rural entrepreneurship in Oman. A constant comparative method has been applied to face-to-face interviews with contemporary entrepreneurs - twenty participants from three rural localities. Based on the obtained data, three types of the entrepreneurial community’s orientations have been observed which are rooted in the interplay of three categories of values or drives. It has been found that: (1) cultural value orientations carry a significantly more profound importance to the entrepreneurs’ choices of either pursuing or abandoning entrepreneurial activities compared to economic or infrastructural factors; (2) the most influential drives are centred around the past and are fuelled by Islamic and Omani culture-specific values; and (3) random socio-cultural values need a systematized classification based on their time orientation and their sources of origin. The findings corroborate both existing community-led rural development theory and the theory of immobile resources. The findings can be generalizable to other GCC countries with shared demographic, political and socio-cultural features.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Small Business and Entrepreneurship
Issue number0
Publication statusPublished - Sept 21 2022


  • community-led rural development
  • cultures autochtones
  • développement rural dirigé par la communauté
  • diversification de l’économie
  • economy diversification
  • Entrepreneuriat rural
  • facteurs socioculturels
  • immobile resources
  • indigenous cultures
  • ressources immobiles
  • Rural entrepreneurship
  • socio-cultural factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Strategy and Management

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