Not many people think of shantytowns, illegal street vendors, and unlicensed roadside hawkers as major economic players. But according to jo...
In his new book, Stealth of Nations: The Global Rise of the Informal Economy, Neuwirth points out that small, illegal, off-the-books businesses collectively account for trillions of dollars in commerce and employ fully half the world’s workers.
Further, he says, these enterprises are critical sources of entrepreneurialism, innovation, and self-reliance. And the globe’s gray and black markets have grown during the international recession, adding jobs, increasing sales, and improving the lives of hundreds of millions.
It’s time, Neuwirth says, for the developed world to wake up to what those who are working in the shadows of globalization have to offer. We asked him how these tiny enterprises got to be such big business.
And so should our local farmers market and vendor supported events. Time to get real.