Academy of Entrepreneurship Journal (Print ISSN: 1087-9595; Online ISSN: 1528-2686)

Research Article: 2022 Vol: 28 Issue: 5S

The Role of Incubation Hubs in Social Inclusion

Joe Kumbirai Karambakuwa, Durban University of Technology

Mohamed Sayed Bayat, University of Fort Hare

Citation Information: Karambakuwa, J.K., & Bayat, S.M. (2022). The role of incubation hubs in social inclusion. Academy of Entrepreneurship Journal, 28(S5), 1-18.


The research examined the role of incubation hubs as agents that can help break the barriers towards inclusive entrepreneurship. Incubation hubs have a role to nurture small businesses and provide support. This can also be applied to socially excluded people to aid them to establish successful businesses. However, very limited research has validated the contribution of incubation hubs towards inclusive entrepreneurship. Start-ups that passed through the incubation hub provided a better understanding of how hubs could assist marginalised groups since they were fully aware of what was involved in incubation hubs. The study was aimed at exploring the untapped potential of incubation hubs towards inclusive entrepreneurship and particularly towards the marginalised groups. The research was undertaken among start-up owners who had undergone business incubation. The research was conducted using a qualitative method. Data was gathered using an interview guide. Three focus groups of start-up entrepreneurs made up the sample. A total of 21 start-up founding members were interviewed. Data was analysed into thematic areas using the nVivo software. According to the findings, hubs can contribute to inclusive entrepreneurship and promote social inclusion by providing all people with equal training opportunities to establish and manage businesses. The study found that hubs could provide specialised skills that were not common in marginalised communities and could be turned into a business. The research also found that incubation hubs might assist in inclusive entrepreneurship by providing training chances for marginalised individuals as well as exposing them to local markets, trade fairs, networks and other associated platforms. The hubs offer the ability to tailor programmes for people of different types depending on their own business experience, education level and interests. While marginalised individuals may have business ideas, the research found that it would be preferable if incubation centres could help them establish their ventures. Because of their various backgrounds, marginalised groups may require different forms of motivation to increase their confidence and ability to succeed in the company that incubation hubs might use. While marginalised individuals may have business ideas, the research found that it would be preferable if incubation centres could help them establish their ventures. Incubation hubs were found to be able to help inclusive entrepreneurship by decentralising their operations to accommodate all stakeholders. In conclusion, incubation centres have the potential to be game-changers in the process of assisting individuals with a variety of limitations to become entrepreneurs through enterprise development training, customised process improvement, appropriate support and access to financial resources.


Inclusive, Marginalized, Entrepreneurship, Incubation, Programming.


This research looks at strategies that incubation hubs can employ to assist entrepreneurs from marginalised groups. Inclusive entrepreneurship is key to the development of societies. Most marginalised groups have always wanted social inclusion which is good for effective programming. Issues of inclusive entrepreneurship provide insights into how entrepreneurs from marginalised groups can fit into the whole matrix of society. The role of marginalised groups is also critical in creating a vibrant ecosystem as these groups have always provided goods and services in the communities that they live in. Because of their various backgrounds, marginalised groups may require different forms of motivation to increase their confidence and ability to succeed in their start-ups and incubation hubs might be the right place to sharpen their skills.

Background to the Research Area

Entrepreneurship is vital in the economy because it can increase social inclusion by providing a way for people to generate money and contribute to society. Inclusive development provides a chance for people from all walks of life to engage in and profit from the economic process, which can raise income and living standards. Equality of opportunity is founded on the notion that when nobody is left behind and the economy works for everyone, then all benefit (Baskaran et al., 2019). This has brought to the fore the issue of inclusive entrepreneurship as a critical aspect of social inclusion. Gupta et al. (2015) note that to improve human well-being, social and environmental sustainability and empowerment; disadvantaged individuals and sectors should be included in social and economic processes. As emphasised in the 2015 United Nations Global Sustainable Development Report, international leaders and policymakers have recognised the interdependence between the issues of inclusive economic development and sustainable growth (Corrado & Corrado, 2017). However, when it comes to starting and running a business, many start-ups face several obstacles that include lack of access to knowledge, funding and workspace among other factors.

Pilková et al. (2016) observe that in recent years, governments in Europe and throughout the world have shown a strong commitment to inclusive entrepreneurship, which has been aided by organisations such as the European Commission (2019) whose goal is to enhance under-represented communities' entrepreneurial activity to achieve fairness, address joblessness, using it as a catalyst for economic prosperity. According to Rolle et al. (2020), economic progress does not result in poverty alleviation if these initiatives make no difference to the livelihoods of vulnerable people in society. Although most of these obstacles like lack of knowledge, funding and workspace affect all start-ups, they are often more severe for marginalised entrepreneurs; hence, strategies must be found to ensure that there is an inclusive approach to development. This promise to include everyone in all economic activities will not be realised unless everyone gets the chance to establish a venture and succeed in creating sustainable self-employment (Alpsahin Cullen, 2019).

It has been observed that inequalities and a lack of involvement have far-reaching consequences for economic growth and social development among blacks in Southern Africa (Rolle et al., 2020). Furthermore, they note that most African nations have hindered and curtailed innovation for disadvantaged groups to operate in the global economy, worsening the inclusivity of entrepreneurs and the socioeconomic well-being of disadvantaged people. It is against this background that the research looks at how incubation hubs could become a game- changer for enterprises being run by the marginalised entrepreneurs from the perspectives of those who have passed through hubs.

Literature Review

Theoretical Framework Governing the Study

This research used the Social Network Theory (SNT) as its theoretical framework. Start- ups and the environment in which they exist represent a network. Domańska (2018) was of the view that start-ups represent a network of society that is linked through financing, workshops, cluster summits, incubators and knowledge bases, among other elements. He further stated that the channel and fields of cooperation between knowledge-based institutions and start-ups can be defined as a network. Pratono (2018) was of the view that social networks in which each actor interacts interdependently with others for mutual gain give rise to social capital which provides information, influence and solidarity. Networks thus provide shared resources and opportunities (Marin et al., 2015).

In the context of a start-up, this helps firms to generate more value (Pratono, 2018) and allows individual firms to succeed (Cvtanovic et al., 2015). Dodd (2016) observed that individual, interpersonal and personality variables are crucial in the performance of the network.

It is of considerable significance to create a strong network based on successful relationships to get the resources to establish and grow a business (Chen et al., 2017). The expansion of social networks and the creation of online markets have provided new possibilities for entrepreneurs to find start-up capital and for non-professional lenders to invest their funds. Vismara (2016) noted that many investors lend money to people they know mostly on basis of credibility. The role of social capital is critical in entrepreneurial finance since network connections between start-ups and potential investors influence the choice of projects to fund.

Social network ties are highly relevant for start-ups because of the experience that comes with them (Steiber, 2020). From a network perspective, social networks are ideally suited for knowledge-intensive businesses, where joint problem-solving is relevant, and, for start-ups in their very early stages; networking is a vital part of business development (Steiber, 2020). The theory of social networking stresses that social support is inseparable from the creation and maintenance of social networking relationships. The creation of network ties and the procurement of capital are essential to the growth and advancement of start-ups (Chen et al., 2017).

A social network partnership is an arrangement that assists start-ups through social networking and encourages the acquisition of useful knowledge and services from each other (Mostafiz & Goh, 2018). Start-up businesses attach value to the support of the network. The views and recommendations of the internal and external networks contribute to the performance of the enterprise (Chen et al., 2017). For start-ups, relying on external network partnerships may help manager’s better respond to the market and achieve relative strategic advantages and benefits. Thus, the SNT explains the impact of networking on entrepreneurship and individuals within the network, their linkages and the outcomes of the relationship (Mostafiz & Goh, 2018).

Inclusive Entrepreneurship

Inside the entrepreneurial ecosystem settings, there is an implied expectation that all start-ups would have equal access to capital and funding but research has shown that this has not always been the case (Brush et al., 2019). Entrepreneurship is intended to play a key role in ensuring inclusive growth. It relies on various developments linked to the involvement of business incubators, academic institutions, and social enterprises in accomplishing inclusive entrepreneurship, innovation, and sustainable development including business incubation hubs (Baskaran et al., 2019). Although there is no universally accepted definition of inclusive entrepreneurship, it is widely agreed that it entails providing similar opportunities for all segments of the population to engage in and profit from the entrepreneurship growth process. Pilková et al. (2016) described inclusive entrepreneurship as a term that refers to the inclusion of marginalised communities in entrepreneurship to assist them in addressing economic and social issues. Inclusive entrepreneurship contributes to social inclusion that gives all people an equal opportunity to start up and operate businesses. Hamburg & Bucksch (2017) further defined inclusive entrepreneurship as a mechanism and process for aiding people with a variety of social and economic limitations to become entrepreneurs through business development training, customised process improvement, support planning and accessibility to financial resources.

Targets Groups in Entrepreneurship

Target groups in the inclusion process are those that are disadvantaged, under- represented in entrepreneurship and self-employed including youth, women, seniors, ethnic minorities, immigrants and disabled people (Hamburg & Bucksch, 2017). Strategies and mechanisms used for assisting people with different challenges to become entrepreneurs are business planning preparation, setting personalised business growth targets and providing appropriate support and access to financial services while operating within a consensus-driven and inclusive ecosystem (Shaheen, 2016). A complete understanding of the entrepreneurship environment cannot be established without an inclusive classification system (Romme & Reymen, 2018). More robust approaches are, therefore, needed to ensure that everyone is catered for.

Gender and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

The relationship between gender and entrepreneurship needs to be examined from a multi-level viewpoint which means looking at women’s entrepreneurship in the context of the various environments in which they engage with society. In reflecting on the various spheres in which female entrepreneurs engage with society in business, it is clear that the paradigm of venture formation which places a premium on capital, business and management systems but does not look at the role of disadvantaged groups needs to be reviewed (Osunmuyiwa & Ahlborg, 2019). Women remain under-represented among venture founders and have different motives and priorities from men. Some women are likely to start their ventures to better maintain their work-life balance while others start businesses to avoid the social barriers in the workplace (Halabisky, 2017). The role of personality traits and identification in differentiating entrepreneurial success between men and women was a central theme in the entrepreneurial literature of the 1980s but this has changed to inclusive entrepreneurship (Osunmuyiwa & Ahlborg, 2019). This entails giving everyone equal opportunities.

Despite the inclusion of cultural and social assets such as networks, mentors and role models, there is little mention of potential gender dynamics in literature which appears to assume that all actors have equal access to support structures and resources within the economy (Acs et al., 2017). While there are now emerging patterns of female-focused accelerators, the gender-based social structures within the entrepreneurship ecosystem, comprising accelerators, incubators and co-working facilities indicate that the majority are still male-driven (Orser et al., 2019) with the proportion of women being a paltry small percentage (Brush & Greene, 2016).

Social Inclusion in Entrepreneurship

Incubation hubs should embrace an inclusive approach by focusing on under- represented and vulnerable groups of entrepreneurs (OECD/EC 2019). Women, youth, migrants, the unemployed and disabled people must be included in the entrepreneurship process. Incubation centres can help incubated ventures by transferring information and offering resources to all under-represented groups (Alcaide, 2019). Workspace sharing helps impoverished entrepreneurs’ incubated projects thrive because by the time they are weaned, they will have built the necessary capacity to support themselves and this would boost the odds of a start-up’s sustainability.

Inclusive entrepreneurship is founded on the idea that no one should be left behind and the economic system should work for everybody and everyone must benefit. Social inclusion is accomplished when everyone has the ability and opportunities to fully engage in societally accepted financial, social and cultural activities. New classes of entrepreneurs such as migrants, ethnic minorities and women must be included (Baskaran et al., 2019). Often, persons with disabilities increasingly find societal programmes and structural obstacles to jobs insurmountable and overlapping. These social and career barriers may be the result of employment recovery programmes lacking the tools, skills and contacts to assist disadvantaged people to become self-employed or find work (Shaheen, 2016).

Barriers in Inclusive Entrepreneurship

According to O’Brien et al. (2019), mainstream social systems can find it difficult to access disadvantaged communities. O’Brien et al. (2019) further stated that despite proof of good practice, government and conventional business support, there has been little success in interacting with under-represented communities such as people with disabilities, women, black, and minority ethnic and migrant groups. This is because of a supposed lack of business support services, linguistic and cultural differences or a lack of confidence in public officials.


Disabled entrepreneurs are often stuck between overlapping or misaligned systems for recovery planning, market analysis, and funding, all of which delay or even derail their entrepreneurship process. It is acknowledged that the diverse needs of disabled people not only affect them in meeting business growth needs but also address a wide range of life needs that could affect their businesses’ success (Shaheen, 2016). According to research, under- represented groups in entrepreneurship may face obstacles to entrepreneurship due to a lack of required business knowledge, adequate access to funding, lack of mentoring and advice, lack of role models as well as a lack of social resources and social networks in their deprived communities (O’Brien et al., 2019).

Self-employment among the disabled is sometimes driven by a desire to break away from the restrictions of the labour market or a lack of job independence. Apart from lower levels of educational achievement and social network wealth, disabled entrepreneurs face a slew of other barriers to entrepreneurship including restricted access to services, knowledge, and financial support as well as the fear of losing daily benefit income or slipping into the welfare benefit trap (O’Brien et al., 2019). To meet the needs of disabled businesses, a holistic approach is needed which includes customised educational services, continuing business assistance, microfinance loans and disability sensitivity training for business advisors.

Some disabled entrepreneurs focus on creating a part-time livelihood or a low-demand enterprise in which they are the sole owner or staff member. This could be attributable to the fear of losing disability benefits or it could be due to fears about their capacity to satisfy the expectations of enterprise ownership for others. For others, part-time enterprise ownership can offer the benefit of having a mix of enterprise earnings and social benefit income as well as the preservation of medical health insurance (Shaheen, 2016).

Female Entrepreneurship

While it is essential for individuals to have a variety of options in the labour market, women also have untapped entrepreneurial potential which policymakers must unlock while keeping in mind that women are a diverse group with many different motivations, desires and projects (Halabisky, 2017).

Discouraging social and cultural practices, reduced levels of entrepreneurship expertise, greater difficulties in securing start-up finance, fewer and less efficient entrepreneurial networks and policy environments that inhibit entrepreneurship are among the obstacles that marginalised groups identified when starting new businesses (Halabisky, 2017). Female entrepreneurship is lower than male entrepreneurship in almost every country of the world and women are significantly under-represented in competitive entrepreneurial ecosystems (McAdam et al., 2018). Alpsahin (2019) noted that the OECD report of 2017 established a variety of cultural, social and consumer obstacles to female entrepreneurship, noting that two-thirds of women feel that they lack the skills to launch ventures effectively and that more than half of women cite fear of failure as an obstacle to entrepreneurship. While there are many explanations for the gender disparity in entrepreneurship, it is evident that personalized support is needed to resolve women’s marginalisation in the sector (O’Brien et al., 2019).

Minority Groups and Immigrant Entrepreneurship

Minority ethnic groups may face social and economic drawbacks that make it difficult for them to engage in entrepreneurship (O’Brien et al., 2019). While immigrant entrepreneurship is similar to that of the rest of the population, minority groups and immigrants generally have fewer opportunities and encounter a variety of unique obstacles to entrepreneurship such as prejudice from the regular populace. Immigrants are drawn to entrepreneurship by both push and pull forces with push factors contributing to self- employment which remains an enticing mode of work partly because it helps immigrants to resist surveillance by authorities (Mickiewicz et al., 2019). Immigrants may establish a business as a way of surviving economically but this is most likely due to a shortage of employment that matches their skills which may limit their opportunities to access paying jobs based on language, cultural barriers, biases and inequality.

O’Brien et al. (2019) highlighted managerial capabilities, restricted social networks, inadequate information exchange, challenges in finding markets and financing, working in disadvantaged regions as well as language and legal system barriers in the host country as common challenges faced by ethnic minority groups. Immigrants bring new skills with them which they can use commercially by launching new firms but they require special training to fully integrate. Tengeh & Nkem (2017) noted that restricted access to finance is a major factor that stifles the start-up development of most ventures regardless of the entrepreneurs’ country of origin. Furthermore, they argued that to ensure the sustainability of their venture start-ups, the overwhelmingly significant proportion of immigrant entrepreneurs look for alternative sources of financing such as stokvels in South Africa or njangis in Cameroon. Financial barriers are the main hindrance to entrepreneurial inclusivity among immigrants.

Policy Support for Inclusive Entrepreneurship

Though there is diversity among under-represented communities, they all face substantially similar barriers to entrepreneurship. Furthermore, since these social groups have substantial and diverse needs, it is obvious that the standard, traditional or one-size-fits-all response to entrepreneurship assistance is ineffective and this necessitates a personalized and comprehensive support structure (Yusuf, 2015).

Business incubation is seen as one of the methods of assisting diverse entrepreneurs in their initial stage of formation and assisting them in making a meaningful contribution to the local communities as well as economic development. Over time, there has also been a progressive transition in the understanding of the position of business incubators and they are now increasingly seen as enablers of social inclusion and promoters of inclusive growth (Baskaran et al., 2019).

One way to bring citizens back into employment is to start a new venture or become self-employed which is a core aim of inclusive entrepreneurship initiatives as it contributes to better labour market engagement within the targeted demographic groups (Hamburg & Bucksch, 2017). Common tools such as training and financial assistance are used to resolve these challenges but they ought to be extended because they have not reached the whole community including the marginalised groups (Halabisky, 2017).

Inclusive entrepreneurship policies must cultivate entrepreneurial talent in under- represented communities which then necessitates the implementation of uniquely tailored programmes that are open, inclusive and responsive to their needs. Some academic institutions have recently extended their entrepreneurship programmes to incorporate the development of personalised business support services for under-represented populations (O’Brien et al., 2019). Considering the cross-disciplinary experience and skills of academics, universities are best placed to promote these initiatives (Hazelkorn, 2016).

Under-represented groups have different encounters of entrepreneurship from the general population. This demonstrates the need for equitable strategies and entrepreneurial resources tailored to their unique interests within the ecosystem (Maritz & Foley, 2018). Common approaches to entrepreneurship such as starting a business or forming a high-growth company may not be especially beneficial to these under-represented communities since current ecosystems may unintentionally drive under-represented groups away from entrepreneurial activities and push them nearer to social marginalisation (O’Brien et al., 2019).

Research Methodology

The study was conducted using the qualitative research method. This approach is appropriate when empirical data is needed to address the research question and the researcher seeks to answer questions regarding meaning and viewpoints from the respondents' viewpoints (Hammarberg et al., 2016). A target population, according to Alvi (2016), is defined as all people who meet the criteria for a specific study. Participants were purposefully chosen. People represented various segments of the population, and three focus-group interviews were conducted with between 6 and 10 participants from each segment. This strategy was adopted since the study was exploratory and the goal was to learn about the participants’ perspectives. As a research tool, an interview guide was used during the interviews Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development/European Commission, (2019).


The findings examined the respondents’ views on assisting potential entrepreneurs from marginalised groups. Marginalised groups can benefit from the linkages that exist between them and established networks in the entrepreneurial ecosystem like incubation hubs. According to the findings, hubs can contribute to inclusive entrepreneurship and promote social inclusion by providing all people with equal training chances to establish and manage businesses. Hubs can provide opportunities for people from all walks of life to participate in and profit from the entrepreneurship development process. The study found that hubs could provide specialised skills that were not common in marginalised communities and could be turned into businesses. The following factors were found to be important in inclusive entrepreneurship.

Knowledge and Training

Knowledge and training are essential to the development of marginalised groups. Marginalised groups needed to be infused with the right and relevant knowledge coupled with adequate practical training. This was informed by the following responses.

Focus Group 1

They have talent but, in most cases, they lack knowledge on how to market their wares.

It may also be prudent to offer some free business training and let those become your entrepreneur champions.

Focus Group 2

When assisting their equipment and machinery, there is a need to properly capacitate them on the use of the machinery, otherwise they may fail to maintain them.

Marginalised people can do anything but lack the know-how and where to take their ideas to.

Research findings show that marginalised entrepreneurs can succeed if they receive the necessary entrepreneurial training. According to Radović-Marković (2016), the inclusion of disadvantaged groups in lifelong learning and entrepreneurship contributes to decreasing disparities and attaining inclusive growth in the long run. He further notes that increased participation of marginalised communities contributes to inclusive growth and enhances a nation’s economic and social progress. Marginalised people must have access to suitable training that suits their abilities, which is critical in skills development. Therefore, support for marginalised people must be well-planned to ensure that any capacity development will assist them to succeed in their entrepreneurial businesses.

Unlocking Their Potential to Establish Successful Businesses

Assisting entrepreneurs from marginal groups could unleash their potential to be successful in business. Skills were needed in the following areas.


Skills on how to operate machinery could help them in business.

Focus Group 1

They have the potential provided we have machinery that is simple to use and places that they can operate from without fear of being arrested or harassed.

Mentoring and Training

Mentoring and training on business skills were needed.

Focus Group 3

They require mentoring and good networking and training on basic business management literature.

Relationship Skills

They could build relationship skills that assist them in dealing with people.

Focus Group 3

Relationship-building is critical as most of these marginalised people do not want to come into the open even when they do their businesses.

Special Skills

Special skills such as those that they were accustomed to in their communities could be developed and turned into a business.

Focus Group 2

They are just as good as anyone from any community, and they can do what others can do. In their communities, you will find that they are operating their backyard businesses. For instance, migrants usually come with special skills because of the environment in the host country. Most of them want to operate in the underground world.

Focus Group 3

If you look at it, we have people who are working in different areas and a system must be created to tap talent that will not ordinarily come to the formal platform.


Exposure to marginalised groups creates opportunities for them. This includes exposure to local markets, trade fairs, networks, and other related platforms. Furthermore, exposure to the incubation hubs would allow marginalised people to be able to understand the hubs’ offerings and be able to access them. This is supported by the following views.

Focus Group 1

There should be funds meant to assist marginalised people to start their entrepreneurial ventures. If I were in the rural areas, I think I would not have had this opportunity to be at the incubation hub. So, there is a need to expose marginalised people to business training and incubate their ideas from wherever they are.

Roadshows must be put in place for the specific purpose of publicising the existence and purpose of such programmes.

They must not limit themselves but instead they must explore further to see their businesses grow. They must be allowed to get into local exhibitions and shows and this will help them grow through the exposure they get.

Marginalised people have the potential to establish businesses because they have everything but lack access and exposure to the formal system that can help them to establish businesses.

Focus Group 2

Entrepreneurs from marginalised groups can also be assisted by enrolling them at the incubation hubs so that they are capacitated. They can even be enrolled in the incubation hubs but maybe government may take the lead in doing so.

Any person can do business and need proper training. Marginalised persons can enrol at the hubs so that they can formalise their businesses.

The sentiment of the respondents was supported by Etim and Iwu (2019) who noted that expanding entrepreneurial prospects for marginalised people is critical for creating jobs, giving them the feeling of belonging and stimulating the economy. Opportunities must therefore be opened for them in incubation hubs and other entrepreneurial programmes.

Customised Programmes and Existing Business Acumen

Programmes should be customised for such groups based on their own business experience, level of education and interest. This is highlighted below.

Focus Group 2

These people can do farming and keep lots of livestock and make money in the communal areas, which then cannot stop them from sustaining a small business.

Focus Group 3

You then need to tailor-make programmes for them though the nature of businesses that they may do may need to be different.

Hurley (2016) observed that programmes that are as near to a work-like setting as feasible have proved to be beneficial in aiding marginalised communities. For learning to take place, it is necessary to assist disadvantaged entrepreneurs with customised learning tools. Training has the potential to help the most vulnerable people in society by providing the knowledge and skills needed to enter the entrepreneurship circles. There is, therefore, a need to identify how training may lead to more effective learning and provide services to the marginalised people in the community who lack knowledge and expertise.


They may have business ideas but need assistance with how to formalise their businesses.

Focus Group 1

They have the potential to establish successful businesses if they market their products and formalise their businesses.

Focus Group 2

Any person can do business and need proper training. Marginalised persons can enrol at the hubs so that they can formalise their businesses.


It was important for the diversity of marginalised groups to be considered.

Accommodation for People with Disabilities

People with disabilities are often marginalised and they need to be accommodated in capacity-building programmes. They need to have access to machinery and resources that people with disabilities can operate. Training should be done using alternative formats to accommodate disabilities.

Focus Group 1

Machines for production should be simplified that people with disabilities will be able to operate them. In our case, the machines we trained with at the hub were manual which may not be good for those who are physically disabled. Most equipment is heavy which may work against them. Incubation centres have no facilities for persons who are disabled and the access points as well as the machinery are not fit for them.

There is a need to provide them with facilitators who appreciate such vulnerable groups of people and who are friendly to them.

Focus Group 2

The disabled need to be assisted as well by giving them machinery that requires less physical effort.

Literature has it that a large number of handicapped people are unaware of the many training opportunities provided by the hubs, and the handful of incubation centres that are meant to provide quotas for marginalised people do not do so. According to Moazzem & Shibly (2020), many disabled persons and particularly those who live outside of cities believe that incubation hub training contributes nothing to skills development nor does it help them to create jobs since they do not provide training based on local requirements. Therefore, the provision of entrepreneurial knowledge and education customised to the needs of poor and marginalised populations would lead to a positive change that would transform the entrepreneurial culture of disadvantaged persons. There is, therefore, the need to customise training and the course content to the needs of this community.


Due to their diverse background, marginalised groups, may require different types of motivation to boost their confidence and potential to excel in business.

Focus Group 2

If marginalised groups are given the same motivation as others, this motivation will make them feel that they are as good as others and have the potential to do the same.

Focus Group 3

A lot of them do not believe in themselves as they lack the creativity and funds to start viable businesses. Some of them have great minds, potential but lack strength and toughness. When things get tough, they normally quit.

Marginalised groups can do business but what is needed is to give them the confidence to expand and grow.


Marginalised people may lack patience because they require money immediately because of their situation. Hence, this may compromise their development.

Focus Group 3

Marginalised people want businesses that give them money there and there and have no patience to go through the turbulences.

Documentation and Legalities

Documentation and legalities was an item that needed to be addressed.


They should be assisted with certification, as this was needed for them to be registered.

Focus Group 1

Certification of their products cannot be done without them getting registered thus they need to be registered as there are more benefits in the formal space.

Fees and taxes

Fees and taxes remain an ongoing challenge for all entrepreneurs, but they could be even more of a challenge for marginalised groups.

Focus Group 1

It is a good thing to work with people from marginalised groups and they can be assisted by reducing taxes or exempting them from paying certain fees.

To encourage marginalised persons to become entrepreneurs of repute, there is a need to exempt them from certain fees or levies and the laws should not illegalise most of their operations.


Assistance with paperwork was needed due to low levels of education.

Focus Group 1

Marginalised people do not have the proper paperwork to do business and their education is low.

Most disadvantaged individuals operate without documentation, and the lack of proper registration has harmed them. They need to register their start-ups to function freely since there are worries about the legitimacy of their operations if they stay unregistered. Literature has it that unregistered entrepreneurs are more likely to be seen as a problem due to the shady image of their business interests and they may find it difficult to carry out their responsibilities in compliance with legislation (Van Wijk & Mascini, 2019). As a result, the authorities may feel compelled to regulate and control all start-up businesses regardless of the registration status.

Location and Resources

The location of marginalised people could be problematic and could in turn impact access to resources.


Assistance via the hubs should be on a decentralised basis to accommodate the location shortcomings of marginalised groups.

Focus Group 2

It is difficult for marginalised communities to go some distance in search of opportunities so there is a need to decentralise places [where] they can get assistance as well as even the incubation hubs.

On-site Training

On-site training should be provided for marginalised groups due to location and travel constraints.

Focus Group 1

Training on entrepreneurship should be done in places where the marginalised people stay or operate since they cannot ordinarily come on their own to the hubs or innovation centres.

Focus Group 2

Most marginalised people lack proper education and live-in areas that are difficult to access hence there is a need for trainers who can go to where they are and impart entrepreneurship skills to them.

Reduce Migration

Assisting marginalised groups can reduce their migration to urban areas as they can open businesses in the rural areas.

Focus Group 2

If the marginalised people are empowered and start businesses, then this will help in reducing urban to rural migration.


Resources are a much-needed item for marginalised groups.

Focus Group 1

Marginalised people need machinery for their enterprises and if sourced for them they could be of great assistance.

According to Radović-Marković (2016), state financing in many developing nations is insufficient to cover the expensive costs of equipment, resources, infrastructure and instructor training to engage with marginalised populations. The situation of disadvantaged groups has improved slowly, but they are not identified as a priority issue for solutions because of a lack of financial provision from the state.


Market assistance was needed for the marginalised groups.

Create a Market

Markets needed to be created for marginalised groups to ensure demand for their products.

Focus Group 2

Marginalised groups can be trained and produce several wares but if markets are not found then there is a challenge for them. The enterprises that they get involved in should have guaranteed them a market or there must be demand for the product.

Market their Products

They needed to be taught how to market their products and be assisted with this. A target market should be created as well.

Focus Group 1

They can be assisted to market their products so that they get a better return. In doing so, they can also be helped to formalise their businesses so that they can benefit from several initiatives that target formal businesses from both government and non-governmental bodies. We have noted that formalised businesses get assistance from the government, [and] banks have loans that target formalised businesses.

They need to be assisted with the marketing of their products so that they get more value from their products


This aspect related more to foreigners and it was recommended that they should be established in their home countries before expanding their market to another country. In most cases, foreigners tend to be part of marginalised groups because they lack proper documentation to participate in the mainstream economy of the host country. Most of their entrepreneurship activities are done underground to avoid detection by authorities.

Focus Group 1

I have noted that most migrants would rather work with a local they trust than present their ideas to any organised body. It would be good for people to establish themselves first in home countries and only try to expand into other countries as investors, but this cannot be said to migrants whose reason for moving from their home country is unknown.

According to research, the experience of interacting with people from other cultures may be a beneficial stimulant for entrepreneurial attitudes in general (Pidduck et al., 2020). Cross-cultural knowledge provides special benefits for enterprises and impacts one’s capacity to identify lucrative business possibilities, enhances innovative thinking, and exposes entrepreneurs to various cultural views in terms of issues and business challenges (Vandor & Franke 2016). Exposure to other cultures is an important factor in improving the connection between immigrants and locals, which leads to increased entrepreneurialism. Xenophilic inclinations frequently contradict human nature which is often xenophobic (Tucker & Croom, 2021). Selflessness and collaboration are needed to ensure that one’s contribution to a community will not be abused.


The study found that via inclusive entrepreneurship, additional opportunities might be created locally, which could help marginalised people establish entities in rural areas. Hubs can help marginalised populations receive specialised training. While marginalised individuals may have business ideas, the research found that it would be preferable if incubation centres could help them establish their ventures. Because of their various backgrounds, marginalised groups may require different forms of motivation to increase their confidence and ability to succeed in the company, which incubation hubs might utilise. According to the study, failure of inclusive entrepreneurship might lead to migration, disempowerment and inequality in society. Incubation centres have the potential to be game-changers in the process of assisting individuals with a variety of limitations to become entrepreneurs through enterprise development training, customised process improvement, appropriate support and access to financial resources. Incubation hubs must carefully consider how they can ensure diversity and inclusion. A healthy balance of all individuals can be enabled or established by expanding the location of hubs, and with proper planning incubation hubs incubation hubs should be made more appealing to marginalised groups in their development.


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Received: 07-Mar-2022, Manuscript No. AEJ-22-11465; Editor assigned: 08-Mar-2022, PreQC No. AEJ-22-11465(PQ); Reviewed: 15-Mar-2022, QC No. AEJ-21-11465; Revised: 18-Mar-2022, Manuscript No. AEJ-21-11465(R); Published: 22-Mar-2022

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