The aim of this paper is to contribute to knowledge on innovation from a gender perspective, and to investigate how environment affects the process of innovation by women.
The empirical study uses a Structural Equations Model of a Partial Least Squared (PLS) technique. Data of 40 countries from around the world were collected from 2008.
Institutional environment matters for innovative activity by women. An innovative thinking is required for integrating the gender perspective in innovative milieus in order to enrich, diversify and promote stronger innovation activities, mobilising unexploited opportunities for managers in the business sector, and for policy makers in the public one.
A new sex-disaggregated dataset will allow us to enlarge and improve upon this study. A longitudinal study would be extremely useful, but for the moment, there are no available data of this kind.
Policies designed to reduce the gap for women in innovation activities have to fight against gender segregation in the job market and gender differences in education and training. They must increase flexibility in the workplace, provide more help to conciliate family and working lives, and reduce the gap in family responsibilities taken on by women.
This paper contributes to the cross-over of knowledge between innovation and gender, and reduces the lack of information on how external factors may impact innovative behaviour by gender.
The author wants to thank Professor I. Buendía for her helpful remarks and suggestions. Two anonymous reviewers also made very constructive comments that greatly improve the final version of this paper.
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