Beyond the $ Value: Attitudes, behaviours, and aspirations of Ontario entrepreneurs

Beyond the $ Value: Attitudes, behaviours, and aspirations of Ontario entrepreneurs is a report based on the annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) study on the state of entrepreneurship in Ontario produced in partnership with The Centre for Innovation Studies (THECIS) and Ryerson University.

Drawing on GEM’s 2016 data, this report continues a long-term analysis of the state of Ontarian entrepreneurs. It presents data that quantifies Ontario’s flourishing entrepreneurial ecosystem and compares Ontario to over 20 OECD countries that also participated in the GEM study.

This report goes beyond conventional measures of entrepreneurial success to focus on entrepreneurs themselves. This focus on individual attitudes, behaviours, and aspirations adds a valuable dimension to understanding an essential driver of innovation and growth.

Read this report to help you:

  • Understand the experience of entrepreneurs, from why they start businesses to why their businesses succeed or fail, as well as to get a broad profile of the people drawn to entrepreneurship in Ontario today
  • Compare this year’s results with data from previous years to see where Ontario is headed and what has changed
  • Identify potential challenges to the growth of entrepreneurship in Ontario

The report demonstrates the many places where Ontarian entrepreneurship is thriving. However, it also highlights some of the areas in which Ontario can improve, and where policy interventions or additional research could help fill in the gaps.

Key facts from the report:

Ontario was compared to OECD countries participating in GEM.

  • In 2016, Ontario was one of the highest performing economies in early-stage entrepreneurial activity, with growing numbers of people stepping into new tech sector businesses.
  • However, Ontario lags behind Canada as a whole, in terms of its early entrepreneurship participation rate, with higher participation in provinces such as Alberta, and a smaller increase from 2015 to 2016, compared to previous years.
  • Ontarians believe they have the knowledge, skills and conditions to be successful entrepreneurs and are increasingly comfortable with risk, compared to similar economies (such as Australia Germany, France).
  • 20 percent of Ontarian entrepreneurs were motivated to found their businesses by necessity rather than opportunity.
  • While Ontario has a relatively high proportion of women entrepreneurs (41 percent) compared to similar economies, women report a higher fear of failure and are less likely to have confidence in their knowledge to start a business.
  • Ontario has one of the highest rates of youth entrepreneurship, outperforming the rest of Canada. Youth entrepreneurship in Ontario doubled since 2014, from 8 percent to 16.6 percent in 2016.

For media enquiries, please contact Coralie D’Souza, Director of Communications, Events + Community Relations at the Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship.

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