GEM is one of the world’s largest cross-national collaborative social science research projects. With a growing archive of high-quality data and a network of entrepreneurship experts, GEM has had a significant impact on the field of entrepreneurship scholarship. GEM is regularly cited in high quality academic publications such as The Journal of Business Venturing, Small Business Economics, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, and the Journal of International Business Studies. GEM is building research capacity in developing countries, where academic knowledge and debate on entrepreneurship is currently limited.
Many studies have been trying to answer the question what lies behind the development of the countries. Why are some countries more developed, innovative and successful than others? Is there a link between entrepreneurship and the economic performance of nations and regions? If yes, what are the factors influencing entrepreneurship and is there interplay between institutions, entrepreneurship and regional development?
GEM collects primary data on entrepreneurship. This distinguishes it from other indices. GEM focuses on the individual entrepreneur, since most businesses start with a single individual, or a team of individuals. GEM's approach is the same throughout the world, facilitating detailed international comparisons. GEM recognizes entrepreneurship as a process, its measures capture all the different stages - from seeing an opportunity, making the first steps towards starting a business, nurturing a baby business and scaling it up. GEM's historical global dataset is extremely comprehensive, with well over 2 million observations across over a hundred economies. It is an invaluable resource for researchers and has made a significant academic contribution. GEM is home to over 500 specialists in the field of entrepreneurship research - an impressive global network of expertise. GEM is able to track the informal entrepreneurial activity which official statistics do not capture. This is particularly prevalent in developing economies.
The data collection engine powering GEM research is composed of two complementary tools - the Adult Population Survey (APS) and the National Expert Survey (NES).
- The APS tracks the entrepreneurial attitudes, activity and aspirations of individuals. It is administered to a minimum of 2000 adults in each country.
- The NES monitors nine factors that are believed to have a significant impact on entrepreneurship. it is administered to a minimum of 36 carefully chosen 'experts'.
GEM enables reliable cross-country comparisons - so policymakers can make comparisons with similar countries and discover which policies are working elsewhere. In many countries, GEM indices are used as targets for development and improvement.
GEM’s vast, reliable databases and array of comprehensive reports make it a valuable resource for teachers and educators. GEM provides an unparalleled insight into national entrepreneurship. Students can learn an enormous amount about the entrepreneurial ecosystem of a given country. GEM is an authority on global entrepreneurship. Those studying global entrepreneurship can look across the many countries in GEM to get a landscape view of entrepreneurship around the world. Students can use GEM data to determine patterns within and across different economic development levels and geographic regions. GEM’s extensive individual-level datasets can be used to teach quantitative and statistical analysis. Students can use the data to experiment with different analysis techniques; graduate students can formulate and test hypotheses about entrepreneurship in a country, region, or across the globe.