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Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2004


Small business -- Oregon -- Portland Metropolitan Area -- History, Small business -- Oregon -- Forecasting, Small business -- Oregon -- Economic conditions, Small business development -- Oregon -- Portland Metropolitan Area, Small business -- Oregon -- Portland Metropolitan Area -- Statistics


The prospects for small businesses are frequently discussed in politic al circles as metropolitan Portland looks for a path through the current recession. How are small businesses faring in today's metroscape? Addressing this question requires us to consider an even more obvious one? just what is a small business? In our region, it may be a self-employed artist showing at local galleries, a flower stand at a farmer's market employing a few unpaid family members, a professional office providing services to another small business that employs dozens of workers at hourly wages, or a small manufacturer with dozens of highly paid salaried employees producing specialized machinery for export. While all the region's small businesses may share common concerns, unique problems vary according to industry, community, and owner experience. This article identifies some of the diversity and focuses particularly on the response of some of the region's local governments and non-profits.


Originally appeared in the Winter 2004 edition of Metroscape, published by the Institute of Portland Metropolitan Studies, Portland State University.

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