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My mobile, my market: Mobile phone uses and economic performance in the informal sector in Dakar

Mon mobile, mon marché. Usages du téléphone mobile et performances économiques dans le secteur informel dakarois

Jean-Philippe Berrou (), François Combarnous (), Thomas Eekhout and Kevin Mellet
Additional contact information
Jean-Philippe Berrou: LAM - Les Afriques dans le monde - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
Thomas Eekhout: GREThA - Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée - UB - Université de Bordeaux - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
Kevin Mellet: SENSE - Sociology and Economics of networks and Services - France Telecom R&D

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Abstract: In sub-Saharan Africa, the vast majority of businesses belong to the so-called "informal" sector. As yet, little is known about their take up of the mobile phone, which suddenly and massively irrupted into their daily operations within less than a decade. This article, which is based on an original study of 500 entrepreneurs in the informal sector in Dakar, combines quantitative and qualitative methods. Its contribution is threefold. First, the study provides broad and detailed empirical insight into the adoption and use of mobile phones by informal entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa. Second, the article draws on an original survey and analysis methodology to propose a robust and comprehensive typology of these entrepreneurs' business uses of mobile phones. Finally, it provides a statistical analysis of the relationship between mobile phone uses and economic performance. Ultimately, this article seeks to contribute to a better understanding of the informal sector and its specific dynamics.

Date: 2020
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ent, nep-iue and nep-pay
Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02506855
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Published in Réseaux, La Découverte, 2020, pp.105-142. ⟨10.3917/res.219.0105⟩

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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:hal:journl:hal-02506855

DOI: 10.3917/res.219.0105

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