Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish? Inertia in Female Entrepreneurship across Countries

Fabian Jintae Froese, Sonja Franzke
2019 AIB Insights  
International organizations and governmental institutions have long recognized the relevance of women for the economic and societal progress of a country. Yet women's participation in the labor force, leadership positions, and entrepreneurship remains low around the world. Hence, practitioners and policymakers focus on supporting women-owned businesses as a means of increasing economic and societal development. To create effective schemes that can help women, researchers, policymakers, and
more » ... y implementers require appropriate information on how to best serve female business owners. Do they know what female entrepreneurs need? Do they aim for societal well-being and/or economic performance with their measures? Discussing these questions, we offer a new, thought-provoking perspective by focusing on cross-country differences of female entrepreneurs and presenting the counterintuitive result that a more challenging business environment and stricter role expectations foster rather than hinder female entrepreneurship. We use this to open up the discussion on what weighs heavier: individual well-being or economic performance? Can measures introduced by companies or governments to support women even be harmful in some cases? In the following, we will discuss cross-country differences in entrepreneurship, before leading over to a three-country comparison of China, Germany, and the United Kingdom (UK). In addition to current statistics on female entrepreneurship, we present preliminary insights from an ongoing project, where we have conducted more than 80 interviews within these three countries.
doi:10.46697/001c.16804 fatcat:wh7ky3kqrvgavk5gukcqdrrc7y