Sustainability and small enterprises in Scotland’s remote rural ‘margins’

Kathryn A. Burnett*, Mike Danson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


A critical yet timely commentary is offered on the nature of sustainability narratives in reference to current small business enterprise in remote Scotland with a key focus on ‘place context’ and the complex interplay of social and material resources. A review of the academic and policy literature supports an interpretative, qualitative approach to examining the digital media texts of various small island small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Scotland that are most especially championing the localness and placeness of their product, and most especially using this as a coded referencing of sustainability, localness, community ethics and trust. The extent of ‘co-production’ narratives of sustainability informed by ‘localness’ in areas that are typically ‘rural’ yet particularly ‘remote’ – where ‘margin’ as an idea and as practice is appropriated and deployed to entrepreneurial effect – are demonstrated. ‘Survival’ is revisited and reflections on its place within enterprise narrative as ‘margins’ are redefined; remoteness is increasingly celebrated as a sustainable reality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)539-553
Number of pages15
JournalLocal Economy
Issue number5
Early online date27 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016


  • business and community development
  • enterprise
  • entrepreneurship
  • islands
  • remote rural

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)


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