Is Youth Entrepreneurship a Necessity or an Opportunity?: A First Exploration of Household and New Enterprise Surveys in Latin America

May 2006
This paper highlights the importance of youth entrepreneurship in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as the challenges and opportunities faced by young entrepreneurs. The authors analyze the differences between youth who become entrepreneurs by necessity or by opportunity, and also review the scope and quality of policies and programs that governments, development agencies and civil societies are implementing to support both groups of young entrepreneurs. The first step in the analysis was to estimate the magnitude the youth entrepreneurship, based on a database of household surveys for 14 Latin American and Caribbean countries covering 80 percent of the population in the region.