Factors, conditions and context of cultural entrepreneurship

Jesús Eduardo Oliva Abarca


Introduction: The entrepreneur is becoming a central figure in the creative economy. Usually characterized as the initiators of commercial ventures, entrepreneurs are also present in the cultural scene. Nowadays, there is a global increase of independent cultural initiatives. Such phenomenon has attracted the attention of both academics and politicians. Cultural entrepreneurship is proposed as a working alternative for the graduates and the professionals who are involved in the cultural production, either as artists or writers, or as cultural promoters, managers, or cultural merchandisers. Although cultural entrepreneurship is a frequent practice in developed economies, in developing countries, such as México, it is an emerging process. Therefore, an inquiry about cultural entrepreneurs was necessary in order to comprehend their organizational and working ways. This study was limited to a local analysis of cultural entrepreneurs in visual arts, audiovisual production, and graphic design in the Mexican state of Nuevo León. The study was structured on the basis of the following research question: how is an entrepreneurial initiative in visual arts, audiovisual production and graphic design established, organized, and operated in the Mexican state of Nuevo León?

Method: The purpose of this study was to comprehend the activities of cultural entrepreneurs in the Mexican state of Nuevo León. To fulfill this objective, interaction with the research subjects was necessary, so the most suited approach was the qualitative method. The research design for this study was the intrinsic case study, with emphasis on the description of the phenomenon examined. The research participants were selected according to three main criteria: the first one referred to the professional experience of the cultural entrepreneurs. The second one was the sociodemographic characteristics of prospective participants. The last criterion involved the lifespan of the initiatives of the cultural entrepreneurs. The research strategy employed was the in-depth individual interview. All the information collected was classified into three main topics that refer to the establishment, the organization and the ways of operation of the local cultural entrepreneurs.

Results: The research results were categorized into three main topics: the first one is the constitution of the cultural initiatives, a theme which comprises the motives, the expectations and the starting resources of the cultural entrepreneurs interviewed. The second topic refers to the organization of their projects, which consists of the structure of the initiatives of the cultural entrepreneurs. The third topic refers to their operational modes, which includes the main activities of the cultural entrepreneurs and their promotional practices.

Conclusion: The increase of independent cultural initiatives in the Mexican state of Nuevo León is due to the need to generate new channels and spaces for emerging cultural production


entrepreneurship; cultural entrepreneurs; cultural production; cultural promotion; entrepreneurial initiative


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.21640/ns.v10i20.1081


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