Small Business & Entrepren­eurship

ICIC’s knowledge of entrepreneurship and small business in under-resourced communities is based on more than two decades of research and practice. Our research combines analysis of public and proprietary data, in-depth case studies and evaluations, and insights from ICIC’s urban business initiatives, which are programs dedicated to supporting the growth of businesses located in under-resourced communities.

This unique knowledge, combined with our network of more than 12,000 small businesses and thousands of organizations that support them in every major metropolitan area across the country, allows us to develop unique research insights and strategies to support the development of small businesses in the communities that need them most.

Technical Knockout: Closing the Gaps in Regional Small Business Technical Assistance Systems (Report, 2022) This report identifies gaps in regional small business technical assistance systems and recommends public policies to close those gaps.

How the Coronavirus Recession and Recovery Have Affected Businesses and Jobs in the 100 Largest Metropolitan Areas (Report Series, 2021-2022). On a quarterly basis, ICIC presents the most detailed and comprehensive information about what has happened to businesses and jobs in each of the nation’s 100 largest metropolitan areas during the coronavirus recession and recovery.

How Resilient Were Small Businesses during the First Year of the Coronavirus Pandemic? (Blogpost, 2021). This blogpost shows what happened during the pandemic’s first year to businesses that were operating when the pandemic started.

Small Business Forward Partners Create Economic Impact by Supporting a Diverse Group of Entrepreneurs (Blogpost/Evaluation, 2020). Year 2019 outcomes from JPMorgan Chase’s Small Business Forward initiative, which supports small businesses owned by women, people of color, and veterans by investing in a cohort of entrepreneurial support organizations.

Driving Inclusive Urban Entrepreneurial Ecosystems: Insights from Year One of the Blackstone Challenge in Chicago (Report/Evaluation, 2019). An evaluation of the Blackstone Charitable Foundation and ChicagoNEXT’s Blackstone Challenge, a three-year initiative launched in 2017 funding a cohort of entrepreneurial support organizations committed to supporting underrepresented entrepreneurs in Chicago.

Small Businesses Drive Job Creation in Big Cities and Their Inner Cities (Blogpost, 2019).  Summarizes the major findings of ICIC’s 2019 update of The Big Impact of Small Businesses on Urban Job Creation.

How Cities Can Help Entrepreneurs of Color Scale Up (Article, 2019). Highlights local policies that can support entrepreneurs of color and help them grow the scale of their businesses.

Helping Entrepreneurs of Color Grow their Business: Early Insights from the Ascend 2020 Initiative (Report, 2018). Completed with the support of JPMorgan Chase and in partnership with the University of Washington Foster School of Business’ Consulting and Business Development Center, this report identifies the strategies needed to help entrepreneurs of color overcome the unique challenges they face as a result of structural biases in entrepreneurial ecosystems.

Small Business Forward Leads the Way in Prioritizing Impact Measurement among ESOs (Blogpost/Evaluation, 2018). Year 2018 outcomes from JPMorgan Chase’s Small Business Forward initiative, which supports small businesses owned by women, people of color, and veterans by investing in a cohort of entrepreneurial support organizations.

Small Business Insights from America’s Inner Cities (Report, 2018). A summary of the characteristics of companies that received ICIC’s Inner City 100 award between 1999 and 2016, based on a survey by ICIC Research.

Impact Analysis of the Prison Entrepreneurship Program: Reducing Recidivism and Creating Economic Opportunity (Presentation/Evaluation, 2018). Sponsored by JPMorgan Chase, a presentation of our evaluation of Texas’ Prison Entrepreneurship Program.

Innovative Prison Entrepreneurship Program is Creating Wealth & Reducing Recidivism Among Formerly Incarcerated (Blogpost/Evaluation, 2018). A summary of our evaluation of Texas’ Prison Entrepreneurship Program.

The Big Impact of Small Businesses on Urban Job Creation (Reports, 2016 and 2019 update). These reports, sponsored by JPMorgan Chase, highlight the economic power of businesses with fewer than 250 employees in five major U.S. cities.

Catalyzing Inclusivity in Incubators and Accelerators (Convening, 2017). National convening based on our report Creating Inclusive High-Tech Incubators and Accelerators: Strategies to Increase Participation Rates of Women and Minority Entrepreneurs.

Creating Inclusive High-Tech Incubators and Accelerators: Strategies to Increase Participation Rates of Women and Minority Entrepreneurs (Report, 2016). Sponsored by JPMorgan Chase, this report identifies the barriers women and minority entrepreneurs face in accessing high-tech incubators and accelerators and recommends strategies that incubators and accelerators can adopt to address them and become more inclusive.

Financing Growth: A Practical Resource Guide for Small Businesses (Report, 2015). Sponsored by JPMorgan Chase, this is a concise guide for businesses exploring outside capital sources.

The Missing Link: Clusters, Small Business Growth and Vibrant Urban Economies (Report, 2014). Used as a framing document for JPMorgan Chase’s Small Business Forward initiative, this report analyzes small business development strategies in the nation’s ten largest cities and recommends that cities align their programs and strategies for supporting small business programs with their cluster initiatives.

A Roadmap for Inner City Business Data Collection (Report, 2014). This report highlights strategies for collecting robust data on small businesses in under-resourced communities.

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