4 Feb 2021 – Science parallel 1 – 1330-1430 GMT+1

Session 4: Small and medium sized enterprises’ (SME) strategies for social sustainability in the High-North


Block of short presentations

(Full abstracts and presentations will be accessible on the conference platform)


Improving social sustainability of coordinated wild berry picking

Peltola, Rainer (1; presenting author); Tuulentie, Seija (1); Sorvali, Jaana (1)

(1) Natural Resources Institute, Finland

Research highlights:

  • Intensification of the use of natural resources creates conflicts between local communities and SMEs also when the resources are considered to have low value such as wild berries
  • Local communities are ready to accept also intensive use of nature, if the local practises are respected
  • Majority of berry SMEs consider conflict conciliation benefitting their businesses


Doing culturally sensitive tourism business in the Arctic: A practice-based approach

Lüthje, Monika (1; presenting author); Kugapi, Outi (1); Autio, Suvi (1); Tauch, Emmanuel (1)

(1) University of Lapland, Finland

Research highlights:

  • This study reveals how SMEs do culturally sensitive tourism business in practice.
  • Cultural sensitivity is a new concept in Arctic tourism business research.
  • The study results can be applied to other tourism SMEs in the Arctic and beyond.


Developing business models for social sustainability in Northern Norwegian and Sami SMEs

Jørgensen, Eva Jenny B. (1; presenting author)

(1) UiT The Arctic University of Norway, School of Business and Economics, Norway

Research highlights:

  • This study explores how entrepreneurs in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the High-North understand and address social sustainability in developing their business models



Kniazeva, Ekaterina (1; presenting author)

(1) Syktyvkar State University, Russia

Research highlights:

  • This study proves the need for a different approach to choosing a development model of single-industry towns in the Arctic zone of the Russia based on local economy.


Micro-enterprises in COVID-19 crisis – promoting entrepreneurial resilience high north

Simunaniemi, Anna-Mari (1; presenting author); Muhos, Matti (1); Ala-Rämi, Katariina (1)

(1) University of Oulu, Finland

Research highlights:

  • The longitudinal thematic follow-up interviews on micro-entrepeneurs provide unique dataset on the process of having and building entrepreneurial resilience in the first months of COVID-19 crisis.
  • Outcome of this study is an evidence-based and timely description of practical actions and survival process of micro-entrepreneurs in the middle of a global crisis.
  • This multiple case study describes the practical managerial actions in micro-sized enterprises when hit by a sudden global pandemic heavily changing the business environment.


The Tensions of Continuous innovation – Before, Under and After a Crisis

Strøm, Heidi Angell (1; presenting author)

(1) UiT The Arctic University of Norway

Research highlights:

  • This study reveals that established cultural entrepreneurs in the Northern Norway are innovative during a crisis


The entrepreneur’s journey: failure and resilience

Fauske, Gretchen (1; presenting author); Johnson, Richelle (1)

(1) University of Alaska Center for Economic Development, USA

Research highlights:

  • Entrepreneurs are at high risk for emotional health challenges. Individuals interviewed sighted isolation, loneliness, and depression when faced with potential or real business failure.
  • Entrepreneurs’ identities are often defined by their business, making them prone to identifying themselves as failures when facing challenges, leading to emotional health impacts.
  • Entrepreneurs who perceive failure as an opportunity to learn are more resilient; this is a mindset that can be learned.


Entrepreneurship Education as a strategy to build regional resilience

Solstad, Elsa (1; presenting author); Hagebakken, Grete (1; presenting author); Reimers, Christian (1)

(1) Arctic University of Norway, BFE, Norway

Research highlights:

  • The Acceleration program is by participants considered an important contribution to the local/regional entrepreneurial ecosystem.
  • However, it is also described as a short-lived ecosystem, that they mostly benefit from whilst on the program and to a lesser degree afterward.


Place, community and strategies of resilience in Arctic SMEs

Johansen, Svein Tvedt (1; presenting author); Olsen, Trude Høgvold (1); Sigurdsteinsdóttir, Hjördís (2); Thiru, Yaso (3); Vieru, Markku (4)

(1) UiT The Arctic University of Norway; (2) University of Akureyri, Iceland; (3) Alaska Pacific University, USA; (4) University of Lapland, Finland

Research highlights:

  • In this paper we suggest a conceptual model that links the nature of SMEs relationships with their local community and other stakeholders and different strategies of resilience


Alexey Pavlov Photo: Lars Olav Sparboe

Alexey Pavlov

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