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Supporting Entrepreneurship during the Covid-19 Pandemic: A Global Study of Entrepreneurs' Resilience and Well-being

The importance of the mental well-being of the small business owners and self-employed who constitute the backbone of our economies is rarely acknowledged. When these entrepreneurs feel well, they are more persistent, productive and innovative, and their businesses perform better.

The Covid-19 pandemic threatens entrepreneurs’ mental well-being and their businesses in unprecedented ways. Understanding how they can successfully navigate the current Covid-19 crisis requires understanding their resilience - the process of adapting positively to adversity.

This includes how entrepreneurs handle the uncertainty and stress produced by this crisis to protect their mental well-being and keep their businesses alive; or potentially innovate and change their businesses to emerge even stronger.

This global study will generate new theoretical and practical insights about the resilience processes that enable entrepreneurs to navigate crises successfully. We study entrepreneurs’ and their business and personal responses to the Covid-19 pandemic in 31 countries: Australia, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, UK and USA.

We will continuously share emerging insights with entrepreneurs to enhance their well-being and resilience; and develop policy recommendations. Entrepreneurs participating in the study receive immediate personalized feedback on their resources to cope with stress. 


The research is funded locally by country-investigators. The Canadian part of this research was supported by the Social Sciences and Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). The Polish and UK part of this research were co-funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 793117 (‘Positive Entrepreneurship’). The Spanish part were co-funded by grant UPO-1258353; Programa Operativo FEDER Andalucía 2014-2020 and PRX19/00332, Ministerio de Esducación Cultura y Deporte. Beca Salvador de Madariaga. The French part of this research was supported and funded by the LabEx Entreprendre (University of Montpellier) (ANR-10-Labex-11-01, funded by the French government) and by the public research center Montpellier Research in Management (EA 4557, University of Montpellier, Montpellier Business School). The German part of the project is funded through Transcampus, a joint initiative by Technische Universitaet Dresden and King’s College London.


If you are an entrepreneur, self-employed or small business owner interested in taking part in the study, please contact us at


portugal-start-up lisboa

Start-up Lisboa

Project status: Completed

Principal investigators

Ute Stephan

Ute Stephan

Professor of Entrepreneurship


Przemysław Zbierowski

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research Fellow in Entrepreneurship



Pierre-Jean Hanard

PhD Student in Strategy, International Management & Entrepreneurship


  • Entrepreneurship
  • Resilience
  • Mental
  • Well-being

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