This study seeks to understand the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) by applying Isenberg's model. Focused on six fundamental domains-policy, finance, culture, support, human capital, and markets-it aims to underscore their indispensability for genuine entrepreneurial ecosystem development. Employing Isenberg's model, this research conducts a descriptive exploration of the relationships between entrepreneurship and the identified domains. Utilizing a literature review approach, secondary sources such as academic papers, news articles, and relevant literature have been scrutinized, elucidating the intricate connections shaping entrepreneurial activity in KRI. The study reveals the close connection and influence of the six identified domains on entrepreneurial activity in KRI. However, it highlights the need for further research to determine the extent of this impact, suggesting potential gaps in current understanding. Identified obstacles to entrepreneurial growth in KRI, including insufficient government support, limited funding, and cultural barriers, necessitate targeted interventions. Recommendations encompass policy reforms, financial support amplification, cultural awareness initiatives, investment in support institutions, educational enhancements, and the creation of a conducive business environment. Implementing these recommendations is imperative for unlocking KRI's entrepreneurial potential, fostering economic growth, and catalyzing job creation and economic diversification. This research contributes to the existing literature by highlighting the pivotal role of collaborative efforts and role clarity among stakeholders in effective entrepreneurial ecosystem development, particularly in KRI. Recognizing the lack of alignment and coordination as potential contributors to challenges faced, the study sheds light on critical aspects that may impede or enhance entrepreneurial ecosystem success in the region.


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Author Biographies

Ramazan Uctu, Department of Business Administration, American University of Iraq-Sulaimani, Iraq

Email: uctu@yahoo.com

Ramazan Uctu is an Associate Professor at the Business Administration Department, American University of Iraq-Sulaimani, Iraq. His areas of interest include innovation (eco)systems, biotechnology in developing countries, university spin-offs, technology transfer and commercialisations, technological entrepreneurship, and, local economic development.

Rebean Al-Silefanee, Department of Economics, College of Administration and Economics, University of Duhok, Iraq.

Email: r.alsilefanee@gmail.com

Rebean Al-Silefanee finished his PhD in Entrepreneurship and Private Sector Development at the School of the Economics (U.S.E.), Utrecht University, Netherlands. He is currently a full-time Lecturer in Entrepreneurship at the Department of Economics, College of Administration and Economics, University of Duhok, Iraq. His research interests include entrepreneurship, private sector development, economic growth, environmental economics and energy.




How to Cite

Uctu, R., & Al-Silefanee, R. (2024). UNDERSTANDING ENTREPRENEURIAL ECOSYSTEM IN THE MIDDLE EAST: INSIGHTS FROM ISENBERG’S MODEL. International Journal of Entrepreneurial Knowledge, 12(1), 86–109. https://doi.org/10.37335/ijek.v12i1.211