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Understanding the role of culture and gender stereotypes in women entrepreneurship through the lens of the stereotype threat theory

Kwame Adom (Department of Marketing and Entrepreneurship, Business School, University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana)
Golda Anambane (University of Ghana, Accra, Ghana)

Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies

ISSN: 2053-4604

Article publication date: 23 August 2019

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the role of culture and gender stereotypes in the entrepreneurial journey of women entrepreneurs. It specifically focuses on women entrepreneurs in the Nabdam district of Ghana.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted the qualitative approach and collected data from 20 women entrepreneurs in the Nabdam district in the Upper East Region of Ghana. Data were collected through face-to-face in-depth interviews which were analysed according to identified themes.

Findings

The key finding of the study is that culture, through gender stereotypes, acts as a “push” motivational factor of women entrepreneurship and breeds more necessity-driven women entrepreneurs than opportunity-driven ones. However, gender stereotyping is found to be a bane to entrepreneurial success of several women-owned enterprises. Due to gender stereotypes, countless women entrepreneurs are sceptical about venturing into “unknown sector” sectors not familiar and operating larger businesses that are likely to yield more profits.

Originality/value

Currently, there is less research on entrepreneurship and culture/gender stereotypes until now in Ghana, and this study seeks to bridge this gap. The results are discussed linking what is pertaining in other economic landscapes, thus avoiding just national perspectives. This is the first known study conducted in the study area that looks at entrepreneurship through the lens of culture-gender stereotypes.

Keywords

Citation

Adom, K. and Anambane, G. (2019), "Understanding the role of culture and gender stereotypes in women entrepreneurship through the lens of the stereotype threat theory", Journal of Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies, Vol. 12 No. 1, pp. 100-124. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEEE-07-2018-0070

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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