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How families shape women’s entrepreneurial success in Morocco: an intersectional study

Christina Constantinidis (Paris School of Business, Paris, France)
Typhaine Lebègue (Ecole de Management de Normandie, Metis Lab, Paris, France)
Manal El Abboubi (Universite Mohammed V, Rabat, Morocco)
Noura Salman (HEC Liege, Liege Universite, Liege, Belgium)

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research

ISSN: 1355-2554

Article publication date: 23 August 2018

Issue publication date: 7 November 2019




Studies on women’s entrepreneurship in Morocco are scarce, despite the potential of women for the country’s economy. This research takes place in a socio-cultural environment searching for a compromise between tradition and modernity. Families occupy a prominent place in Morocco, directly influencing women’s activities. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of family in Moroccan women’s entrepreneurial success.


The qualitative research is based on 60 interviews with women entrepreneurs in Morocco, including women business owners, women professionals and also women co-operators who have not been documented until now, due to data accessibility. It is diversified in terms of personal, family and professional characteristics. The analysis uses an intersectionality framework taking gender and social class into consideration.


The results highlight three categories of women entrepreneur: the “elite”, the “self-made women” and the “co-operators”. Each category is characterised by specific familial and professional realities, underpinned by differentiated dynamics in terms of gender and social class.

Practical implications

The study, from a practical point of view, contributes to a better understanding of the differentiated realities encountered in terms of women’s entrepreneurship, in the Moroccan context.


Studies in developing countries tend to consider women entrepreneurs as a homogeneous group. This research highlights the fact that family support, women entrepreneurs’ practices and their role in entrepreneurial success depend on the background situations in terms of gender and social class. It also contributes to the entrepreneurial success field, revealing different definitions and perceptions of success among women entrepreneurs.



This paper forms part of a special section “Intersectionality and entrepreneurship”, guest edited by Amal Abbas, Janice Byrne, Laura Galloway and Laura Jackman.


Constantinidis, C., Lebègue, T., El Abboubi, M. and Salman, N. (2019), "How families shape women’s entrepreneurial success in Morocco: an intersectional study", International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, Vol. 25 No. 8, pp. 1786-1808.



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