This dissertation is about neighbourhood economies of urban residential neighbourhoods: it is about the people, the places
and the institutions that shape neighbourhood economies. The neighbourhood economy includes shops, offices and also home-based
business. As such, these mostly involve small to medium-sized enterprises and a large share of self-employed, i.e. one-person
firms. Changes in economic production processes in advanced urban economies have increased opportunities for small firms and
the self-employed. A diverse firm population, in terms of sector, size and firm organisation, can be found in residential
neighbourhoods. This research is about how different types of firms are socially, economically and institutionally embedded
in the neighbourhood. Neighbourhood economies tell us important stories about entrepreneurship, processes of production and
consumption, and their spatiality. The findings of the research show that residential neighbourhoods are important, and changing,
sites of production. They accommodate an increasing share of cognitive-cultural economic activities, a sector that has significant
growth potential in advanced urban economies. Not all neighbourhoods are equally successful in attracting business activity,
since high-end, upscale business services and innovative activities tend to cluster in neighbourhoods of high social-economic
status. Also, zoning plans display varying degrees of encouragement and restrictiveness when it comes to economic activities.
Some municipalities are actively trying to upgrade commercial spaces in residential neighbourhoods. These processes of commercial
gentrification can attract more upscale economic activities to the neighbourhood but at the same time can threaten economic
diversity if revitalisation strategies do not include the existing local community of entrepreneurs.