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From ecosystems to advicescapes: business, development and advice in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh

Lewis, David ORCID: 0000-0003-0732-9020, Bowers, Rebecca, Heslop, Luke ORCID: 0000-0002-4641-1521 and Tawfic, Simon (2024) From ecosystems to advicescapes: business, development and advice in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Journal of South Asian Development. ISSN 0973-1741

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Identification Number: 10.1177/09731741241239120


The provision of entrepreneurship advice is a growing feature of private sector development in South Asia but has so far received little attention from researchers. The article explores the theme of business advice in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, drawing on recent ethnographic fieldwork among advice seekers to explore the significance of low-income households of business advice within the unfolding processes of both marketization and state support. It offers a theoretical innovation in the concept of ‘advicescape’, supported by ethnographic materials conveying local-level perspectives and experiences of business advice users. Despite the growth of a complex business support ecosystem in each country, the article finds that many such people are falling through the cracks, in that they face problems accessing advice, find its quality variable and instead rely heavily on informal advice. It ends with reflections on the now dominant business-and-development approach, including a brief observation on improving the inclusivity and effectiveness of entrepreneurship advice.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2024 The Author(s)
Divisions: International Development
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences
Date Deposited: 20 Feb 2024 10:06
Last Modified: 15 May 2024 18:15

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