90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Beyond Silicon Valley, Declining Entrepreneurship

TV’s celebrating Silicon Valley startups, but across the country entrepreneurs are now struggling behind bigger, older businesses. We’ll ask why.

In this Thursday, May 1, 2014 photo, Lou Tashash, owner and president of R-D Manufacturing Inc., left, watches break operator Scott Finlayson work at his precision sheet manufacturing business in East Lyme, Conn. (AP)

In this Thursday, May 1, 2014 photo, Lou Tashash, owner and president of R-D Manufacturing Inc., left, watches break operator Scott Finlayson work at his precision sheet manufacturing business in East Lyme, Conn. (AP)

The pride of the American economy from early days was the idea that anyone could jump in, start their own business and make things happen.  And for a long time, American entrepreneurship drove the US economy and American dreams.  It still does in Silicon Valley and other hot spots.  But nationally, the numbers are down.  American entrepreneurship is sagging.  That’s bad for innovation, for jobs, for dreams.  Is it red tape gumming up the works?  Is it giant companies – Wal-Mart etc. – blocking the way? This hour On Point:  American entrepreneurship in decline.  We’ll ask why.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Danielle Kurtzleben, economics and business corespondent for Vox. (@titonka)

Ray Hennessey, editorial director of Entrepreneur.com. (@Hennesseyedit)

Nancy Koehn, historian and professor business administration at the Harvard Business School. (@nancykoehn)

Lina Khan, policy analyst in the Markets, Enterprise and Resiliency Initiative at the New America Foundation. (@linamkhan)

From Tom’s Reading List

Brookings: Declining Business Dynamism in the United States: A Look at States and Metros — “We show that dynamism has declined in all fifty states and in all but a handful of the more than three hundred and sixty U.S. metropolitan areas during the last three decades. Moreover, the performance of business dynamism across the states and metros has become increasingly similar over time. In other words, the national decline in business dynamism has been a widely shared experience.”

The Atlantic: The Mysterious Death of Entrepreneurship in America – “The story of American entrepreneurship begins with a tale of two definitions ofentrepreneur. When the press imagines the modern entrepreneur, our minds turn to tech—coders, hackers, hoodies, apps, Silicon Valley (the show), Silicon Valley (the valley). And it’s true: This sliver of entrepreneurship has grown, by all sorts of measures, for example by venture-capital funding:”

Entrepreneur: Why Americans Don’t Want to Start New Businesses — “If you truly believe in more jobs, in better wages and broader prosperity, you need Americans to innovate, to take risks, and put their capital at work to create new businesses. You should be rooting for their success, since the more money they make, the more profits they have to reinvest in their businesses. That reinvestment invariably creates jobs, which creates wealth for others.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Mar 26, 2015
In this file photo, protesters sit at the intersection of Wall St. and Broad St. in New York, Monday, Sept. 22, 2014. The protesters, many who were affiliated with Occupy Wall Street, were trying to draw attention to the connection between capitalism and environmental destruction. (AP)

In our age of hyper-inequality, historian Steve Fraser asks when the little guy stands up and says “enough.” He’s with us.

Mar 26, 2015
A child walks through a forest landscape. (Rudolf Vlček / Flickr)

American kids today spend only four to seven minutes a day playing outdoors. We hear a new call to raise the “wild child.”

RECENT
SHOWS
Mar 25, 2015
This June 11, 2014 file photo shows Facebook's "like" symbol at the entrance to the company's campus in Menlo Park, Calif. Facebook users in the U.S. will soon be able to send their friends money using the social network’s Messenger app, the company announced Tuesday, March 17, 2015. (AP)

“Tap and pay”: mobile money, peer-to-peer, all over now. SnapChat, Venmo, now Facebook Messenger. We’ll look at security and the new anthropology of digital money.

 
Mar 25, 2015
In this file photo, Chinese President Xi Jinping, center, shows the way to the guests who attended the signing ceremony of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. (AP)

Is America now its own worst enemy? Blowing a future that should be good? Harvard’s Joseph Nye and the New Yorker’s John Cassidy join us.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Mobile Payments Offer Convenience If You Keep Your Email Safe
Thursday, Mar 26, 2015

Thinking about moving your wallet to your phone? You can! And maybe you should? But TechCrunch senior writer Josh Constine has a few things to tell you before you do.

More »
Comment
 
Using Technology To Get Your Kids Outside
Thursday, Mar 26, 2015

The latest and greatest — using apps to make natural exploration more fun for your kids.

More »
Comment
 
Week In The Web: March 20, 2015
Friday, Mar 20, 2015

The emailed comments question continues to haunt us, we shake off / salute our haters and CNN Politics spends way too much time on FinalCut (in a good way!).

More »
Comment