Family Businesses’ Contribution to the U.S. Economy: A Closer Look
In 1995, we were commissioned to conduct research on the impact of family businesses on the U.S. economy. A search of all relevant research led to the conclusion that the majority of existing data relating to family businesses’ economic contributions were not grounded in empirical research, and the definitions used to distinguish family businesses from other enterprises were ambiguous or non-existent. In 1996, we published a paper providing a framework for assessing the economic impact of family businesses across three ranges, defined by the degree of family involvement in the businesses. This paper revisits that research and updates and improves the original findings based on more recent data.