Since the 1990s, the increase in self-employed migrant workers has been considerably higher than among the native German population. Explanation:
1. the niche model—being self-employed allows one to develop specific qualities and skills and to serve one’s own community;
2. the culture model—self-employment is very important in many countries of origin (in southern Europe the rate of self-employment is much higher than in Germany);
3. the response model—self-employment as a response to the increasing difficulty of finding other ways of earning a living on the job market.
All three models suggest that making spatial resources available for the development of a small-scale “ethnic economy” is extremely important. After all, the vast majority of the self-employed, especially when they first start out, do not take up large areas and must try to keep financial risk to a minimum.
Maren Harnack, urbanist and Christian Holl, architecture critic