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BETWEEN ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN THE NIGER DELTA

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to Study

The recurring crisis and anxiety in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria can be attributed to high unemployment and poverty by successive governments and oil companies to support critical human development and basic social services. The Niger Delta region also suffers from a significant reduction in basic infrastructure despite its contribution to national income. Young people are not employed hence their anomalous behaviors. The Niger Delta region that contains the oil which enriched Nigeria and oil companies is not very developed in relation to the rest of the country. The socio economic condition of the region reflects the irony of poverty in abundance. According to the UN report (World Bank, 2008), a huge percentage of people residing in Niger Delta region lives below the poverty line. The report also notes the high rate of youth unemployment in the Niger Delta, where more than two million young people are unemployed and almost half of the population youths in the area are illiterate. Additionally, the World Bank report (2008), showed that per capita gross national product in the region is below the national average. This report was confirmed by a recent study by Ismail (2016), who noted that indicators of saluting the Niger Delta region were low and well below the country average. This depicts a low level of sustainable development in the region.

Entrepreneurial activities that engage young people will boost economic development in the region, partly due to youth concerns and crime in the region. Entrepreneurship refers to the will of the individual and his ability to search for an investment opportunity, establish a company accordingly and implement it successfully, whether for profit or social benefit. Jegede (1990) knew entrepreneurship as a force mobilizing other resources to meet unmet market demand. It can also be defined as the process of identifying an opportunity and having the abaility to transform the opportunity into valuable services or products.

Entrepreneurship includes the establishment of something different with value from devote time and get a reward as personal satisfaction and money. It involves the ability to utilize factors of production to create goods and services. In general, entrepreneurship involves preparing an individual image to search for opportunities that can propel investment and be able to successfully set up and operate a company based in opportunities. Entrepreneurship is the key to developing any society, because the entrepreneur sees market opportunities and increases motivation, momentum and the ability to mobilize resources to exploit them. Entrepreneurship is linked to innovation and change in business. The project owner is the creator and owner of the business. The coordinates combine other factors of production with its innovative ability to achieve economic drive and wealth and create jobs. This study on entrepreneurship will be guided by seven agents or dimensions of entrepreneurial orientation, including:

  • Autonomy
  • Innovation
  • Initiative
  • Competitive aggressiveness
  • Taking the risk
  • Entrepreneurial education
  • Job creation

Business orientation is linked to a businessman’s desire to accept processes and practices and make decisions for business growth. It explains the impact of the entrepreneur’s identification and exploitation of market opportunities (Dess and Lumpkin, 2005). In view of this, autonomy is understood as an entrepreneurial act of people aimed at forming and implementing business ideas. On the other hand, Innovation means being open to new and novel ideas and experimentation in business setting (Frishammar and Horte, 2007).  Proactive includes identifying and exploiting market opportunities arising from sustainable development while competitive aggressiveness shows the level of effort required to outperform industry competitors.

Sustainable development as a dependent variable is defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Adejumo, 2000) . It is this kind of development that meets and goals of human development at the time that preserves the ability of natural systems to continue to provide natural resources and ecosystem services , which was dependent on the economy and society . Sustainability is based on three pillars: a sustainable society, a sustainable environment and a sustainable economy (Zaman and Goshen, 2010). A sustainable society is one that provides sufficient citizenship without undermining the future generation. A sustainable environment is linked to that environment that helps citizens to develop to the fullest extent while providing security for the future generation; while a sustainable economy is the type of economy that provides citizens with the highest possible income per capita without compromising the income of the individual in the next generation. This has not been achieved in the Niger Delta region, and it is believed that increased entrepreneurial activity in the Niger Delta region can address these problems.

Implementing the concept of sustainable development requires changes to the paradigm shift and redirecting people to reflect the new reality. This, of course, requires the support of the government. Therefore, finding the concept of sustainability can become a starting point to change the operational strategy of the entrepreneur and encourage a businessman proactive to seize the opportunities existing to find new areas for their activities. For owners of innovative projects that focus on the provision of new products, services and technologies in the market will be a catalyst to achieve sustainability, given the innovations in the field of production and distribution. This implies that the scope of sustainability is subject to innovation in the areas of production and consumption for business appears to be indispensable for achieving sustainable development.

Sustainable development is the product of business activities. Entrepreneurship creates jobs that meet the needs of people without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Entrepreneurship facilitates sustainable development by making individuals work alone, self-sufficient and proactive in their development progress without undermining the well-being of individuals and other organizations in the economy and the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Given the dramatic role played by impressive entrepreneurship in promoting sustainable development in other parts of Nigeria, looking this study in the relationship between entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. The result of this study is expected to boost business activities in the Niger Delta region, Nigeria, which will culminate in sustainable development in the region.

 

1.2 Statement of the problem

The high youth unemployment rate, low standard of living and high cost of living in Nigeria have given rise to renewed interest in business development in Nigeria. Although both governmental and non-governmental organizations have made numerous attempts to encourage entrepreneurial activities in Nigeria, especially in the Niger Delta region, the initiatives have failed to achieve the desired results. This may be due to restrictions such as insufficient inefficient infrastructure facilities, as evidenced by road conditions and the absence of railways in the region. The presence of the federal government (in terms of development) is not felt in some states of the region. The destruction of the ecosystem caused the activities of oil companies that affect future development, such as the oil spill. NDDC’s approach to development problems is more political than practical as can be seen in training programs. This may have led many young people to resort to unrest and terrorist activities due to allegations of marginalization and lack of development, given the region’s contributions to the country’s economy. Although the Niger Delta Development Committee (NDDC) and the Niger Delta Ministry are developing infrastructure in the region, the impact is not felt much. Since no known study on this aspect was observed in the areas devastated by environmental destruction and crime, the picture or scenario described above stimulated the researcher to study the relationship between entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the region.

1.3 Objective of the study

The study was conducted to determine whether there is a relationship between entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria. Specifically, the study seeks to:

  1. Define the relationship between business independence and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.
  2. Study the relationship between entrepreneurial innovation and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.
  3. Research the relationship between entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.
  4. Define the relationship between competitive aggressiveness for business and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.
  5. Study the relationship between entrepreneurial risk and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.
  6. Define the relationship between entrepreneurial education and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.
  7. Research the relationship between job creation and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

The questions drafted to guide this study are thus:

  1. What is the relationship between business independence and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria?
  2. What is the relationship between entrepreneurial innovation and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria?
  3. What is the relationship between entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria?
  4. What is the relationship between competitive aggressiveness of business and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria?
  5. What is the relationship between entrepreneurial risk and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria?
  6. What is the relationship between business education and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria?
  7. What is the relationship between job creation and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria?

 

1.5 Research hypothesis

The following blank assumptions were formulated to guide the study.

H 01 There is no significant relationship between business independence and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

H 02 There is no significant relationship between business innovation and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

H 0 3 There is no statistically significant relationship between entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

H 0 4 There is no significant relationship between aggressive business competitiveness and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

H 0 5 There is no significant relationship between entrepreneurial risk and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

H 0 6 There is no significant relationship between business education and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

H 0 7 There is no significant relationship between job creation and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria.

1.6 significance of the Study

The study is expected to be of great benefit to many individuals and institutions. These include youth from the Niger Delta, Niger Delta countries, societies and government at various levels.

Young people from the Niger Delta will benefit from the study results, as their level of entrepreneurial education improves and improves. The extent of youth participation in entrepreneurial activities will also be determined, and methods will be proposed to encourage greater participation in entrepreneurship. Young people and all of the Niger Delta communities will be exposed to special problems that are opposed to the growth of business activities in the region and the steps needed to solve them.

Copies of this research report will be available for use in public libraries in the Niger Delta region. The government at all three levels (local, state, and federal) is also expected to be guided by the results of the study on ways to encourage greater participation of the Niger Delta people in entrepreneurship as a way to improve their standard of living and contribute to sustainable development in the region. In general, the results and recommendations of the study, if implemented, are sure to reduce the rate of youth anxiety and the absolute destruction of lives and property in the region by redirecting youth energy to economically and legally productive livelihoods.

Finally, the study is expected to contribute to the stock of available literature in this field, while serving as reference materials for future researchers in related fields.

1.7 Study scope / limits

The study included only three of the nine states that make up the Niger Delta region in Nigeria. The states are the Akwa ibom, Bayelsa and rivers. The Niger Delta region of Nigeria, according to the official definition of the Nigerian government, extends over an area of ​​more than 70,000 square kilometers and represents 7.5% of Nigeria’s area. It consists of nine states grouping around the Niger River Delta. These are:Abia ,akwa ibom , Bayelsa , Cross River , Delta , Edo , Imo , Ondo and Rivers . Only three of these countries will participate in the study. These are the states of Ako Ibom, the rivers and Bayelsa. The variables involved in the study are business education and job creation. Respondents will be limited to businessmen and officials from a sample of ministries of economic development in the three states.

The researcher found some limitations in the process of conducting this study. The research coverage of the study area was one of the restrictions that the researcher had to fight. In addition, managing and retrieving a questionnaire for some respondents raised some difficulties, as they were not easily found in the seat. However, this limitation was overcome when the researcher made repeated calls to respondents to retrieve the questionnaire.

 

1.8 Operational definitions of basic concepts

The following are operational definitions of terms used in the study.

1) Autonomy: This is understood as an independent measure for people with the goal of forming business visions or the ability to be self-directed in the search for market opportunities.

  1. ii) Competitive aggressiveness: means the level of effort required to beat the industry’s competitors, and is characterized by an aggressive response aimed at improving the market situation.

(3) The business environment: refers to the characteristics of the environment in which the businessman develops his business.

(4) Business education: refers to a program or part of the business program that prepares people to undertake training and / or the acquisition of small businesses.

5) Business orientation: indicates a businessman’s willingness to accept business processes, practices and decision-making for business growth..

(6) Entrepreneurship: refers to the ability and willingness to develop, organize and manage a entrepreneurial company along with any of its risks in others for profit.

(7) Innovation: Means openness to new and novel ideas and experimentation, as well as creative processes that aim to develop new products, services or technological processes.

(8) Proactive: It is defined as a perspective to search for opportunities and a future vision that involves introducing new products or services before the competition and anticipating future demand to create changes and shape the environment.

(9) Assumption of Risks: It is related to taking decisions and adopting measures without any knowledge of potential outcomes and showing the degree of commitment of the resources at risk . Risk was recognized as an element of entrepreneurship from ancient literature.

10) Sustainable development: defined as a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

1.9 The organization of the study

This study on entrepreneurship and sustainable development in the Niger Delta region in Nigeria is written in five chapters. The first chapter deals with the general introduction to the study with the following sub-headings: study background, problem statement, study objectives, research questions, research hypothesis, study meaning, study scope, study limits, definition, operational conditions, and study organization. The second semester is dedicated to reviewing the relevant literature based on the main variables of the study. The third chapter deals with research methodology. This includes the fields of study, research design, study community, sampling and sampling method, data source, investigation tool, tool validation and reliability, instrument management and qualification and method of data analysis. Chapter four is devoted to the analysis and interpretation of data presentation. The results of the study are also discussed in this chapter. The fifth chapter deals with a summary of the study, its conclusion and recommendations. This last chapter is followed with references.

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