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Article
Publication date: 5 March 2020

Carin Holmquist and Elisabeth Sundin

This paper aims to add to the diversity of gender and entrepreneurship studies by presenting the (lived experience) perspective on the development of research on women as…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to add to the diversity of gender and entrepreneurship studies by presenting the (lived experience) perspective on the development of research on women as entrepreneurs.

Design/methodology/approach

An essay built on personal reflections on the development of the field since the 1980s.

Findings

Research on entrepreneurship has shifted toward quantitative studies and the paper format, leading to fragmented research. Research on gender shows another trend, where empirical data have become less central – “women” as individuals are to a large extent not discussed. The authors conclude that the field of gender and entrepreneurship, therefore, is a fruitful arena to perform research in as long as the physical women are not neglected.

Originality/value

Building on the lived experience for almost 40 years as researchers of women as entrepreneurs, the perspective contributes to the understanding of the development of the field.

Details

International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-6266

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 7 December 2021

Carin Holmquist and Elisabeth Sundin

The aim of this article is to discuss how age and entrepreneurship interact in the specific case of older (50+) entrepreneurs. Building on theories on entrepreneurship and…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this article is to discuss how age and entrepreneurship interact in the specific case of older (50+) entrepreneurs. Building on theories on entrepreneurship and theories on age and aging, the authors’ focus is on how such entrepreneurs relate to the building and running of a business organization. The authors discuss how entrepreneurship among the elderly plays out and how older entrepreneurs relate to the narratives on both age and entrepreneurship.

Design/methodology/approach

This research comprises quantitative as well as qualitative studies. The authors show that qualitative methods that unfold the process over time are necessary and essential to fully understand how and why entrepreneurs start their own business and/or continue to run it at older ages.

Findings

The authors find that the choice to become an entrepreneur at the age of 50+ (or to stay as one) is not a goal in itself, becoming an entrepreneur is a means to stay active in the labor market.

Originality/value

The study findings add to entrepreneurship theory by insights on the link between entrepreneurship and the labor market where the authors argue that becoming an entrepreneur at ages 50+ might be more a question of choice of organizational form than a question on a way of living or occupation. The authors also contribute to theories on age by showing that entrepreneurs aged 50+ choose entrepreneurship as a means to be able to stay in the labor market.

Details

Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5648

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 March 2016

Elisabet Ljunggren and Elisabeth Sundin

This paper introduces the special issue’s six articles with different approaches to investigating gender perspectives on enterprising communities. The papers’ approaches…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper introduces the special issue’s six articles with different approaches to investigating gender perspectives on enterprising communities. The papers’ approaches are presented and discussed, and the purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how they relate to the two main concepts of gender and enterprising communities.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is conceptual.

Findings

Through the discussion of the articles, the concept of enterprising communities is found to be fuzzy and to contain a multitude of meanings. This paper elaborates on the community concept and its spatial and “of practice” dimensions.

Originality/value

First, the paper contributes by suggesting how the enterprising community concept could be delimited. Second, the research article contributes to gender perspectives on enterprising communities. It elaborates on what gendered enterprising communities are and how gender might influence enterprising communities.

Details

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6204

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 22 March 2013

Leona Achtenhagen and Malin Tillmar

The purpose of this paper is to direct attention to recent research on women's entrepreneurship, focusing on Nordic countries.

1236

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to direct attention to recent research on women's entrepreneurship, focusing on Nordic countries.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper encourages research that investigates how context, at the micro, meso and macro level, is related to women's entrepreneurship, and acknowledges that gender is socially constructed.

Findings

This paper finds evidence that recent calls for new directions in women's entrepreneurship research are being followed, specifically with regard to how gender is done and how context is related to women's entrepreneurial activities.

Originality/value

This paper assesses trends in research on women's entrepreneurship, mainly from the Nordic countries.

Details

International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-6266

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 March 2016

Malin Tillmar

Women’s entrepreneurship is often seen as the solution of both economic growth and gender equality. This is despite academic knowledge of the gendered preconditions for…

Abstract

Purpose

Women’s entrepreneurship is often seen as the solution of both economic growth and gender equality. This is despite academic knowledge of the gendered preconditions for entrepreneurship in many contexts. This paper aims to focus on the gendering of commercial justice, a precondition for entrepreneurship. Informed by gender perspectives on women’s entrepreneurship and previous studies on commercial justice in East Africa, this paper sets out to explore the experiences of urban women entrepreneurs.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on an interview study with women entrepreneurs and representatives of support organizations in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. The interviews were conducted in Kiswahili, and access was enabled through dialogues with local partner organizations such as the Tanzanian Chamber of Commerce.

Findings

Findings are that with formal legal rights, the informal institutions imply that the marital status of the women, and the attitude of their husbands, is the overarching determinants for the commercial justice perceived as available to them. This has implication for many policy areas, such as entrepreneurship support, women’s empowerment and labour market policy. Theoretically, the findings highlight the importance of studying the informal institutions affecting women’s entrepreneurship around the globe. Concerning commercial justice in particular, three dimensions of gendering are identified.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is based on a qualitative interview study. Further studies with varying methods are needed to further explore the gendering of commercial justice in Tanzania, East Africa and beyond.

Practical implications

A major practical implication of the study is the insight that business for development, will not automatically lead to business for equality, on a general level. The gender bias is also reproduced in everyday business life, for example, thorough access to commercial justice. Special measures to target the gender equality issue are, therefore, necessary. Another implication of the findings regard the importance of Alternative Dispute Resolution initiatives, affordable to women small and medium enterprise-owners.

Originality/value

While other obstacles to women’s entrepreneurship in the developing contexts have been well explored, the gendering of perceived commercial justice has not received sufficient attention in previous studies. Studies applying a gender theoretical perspective on entrepreneurship in the explored context are still needed.

Details

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6204

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 30 March 2010

Elisabeth Sundin and Malin Tillmar

The paper aims to explore the consequences of new public management (NPM) inspired reforms in general and outsourcing of traditional public sector responsibilities in…

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to explore the consequences of new public management (NPM) inspired reforms in general and outsourcing of traditional public sector responsibilities in Sweden to private organizations in particular. At centre stage are the roles of entrepreneurs, women‐owned small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and socially constructed paradigms of gender in this process. The paper's aim is to explore, through a local‐level case study, the currently ongoing process of gendering and regendering in a female‐dominated sector. This is done by a qualitative real‐time study of the introduction of a customer‐choice system in elder care in a Swedish municipality.

Design/methodology/approach

The formal decision in Spring 2008 to introduce a “customer‐choice model” into home‐based elderly care in the municipality is the formal starting point of the research. The authors are given full access to all relevant information and informants including all questions and suggestions from the potential suppliers who were applying to be “authorized and certified suppliers”. Interviews are the main method but also written material like applications and newspaper articles and “letters to the editor” are studied.

Findings

The outcome of the changes are, from the decision‐makers point of view, disappointing. The consequences so far of the customer‐choice system, that have been examined here, can be labelled increased masculinism or even a masculinization of the elderly care sector. Whether the polarization is a presage of the process to come is too early to tell. If so, the masculinization observed in this paper extends along three dimensions: governing logic, leadership and ownership. These gender consequences are not those expected or intended by the leading local actors.

Research limitations/implications

The study is made in an ongoing process. The politicians are making changes aiming at making better working conditions for SMEs and former employees especially women. It is therefore important to follow up what is going to happen in the future. Comparisons with other municipalities and other regimes, nationally and internationally, would also be valuable.

Practical implications

In this case, the practical implications are, almost, the same as the research implications.

Originality/value

The real‐time research design is used focusing on what is happening in practise at the lower organizational levels of an organizational “experiment” of this kind make this paper unusual and valuable both for researchers and practioners.

Details

International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship, vol. 2 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-6266

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 March 1986

Elisabeth Sundin and Goran Johansson

Only a small minority of all firms in all the Scandinavian countries use the labour‐market related measures, i.e. incentives to take on more workers. Big firms are more…

Abstract

Only a small minority of all firms in all the Scandinavian countries use the labour‐market related measures, i.e. incentives to take on more workers. Big firms are more frequent users than small or medium sized firms (SMFs). This is because the number of situations in which it is realistic to use them are few in every SMF. Big differences exist within the SMFs. Industrial firms and those on the periphery are more frequent measure users than others. It is hard to prove that these measures have influenced decisions in any firms, although they are often of great financial importance for SMFs. This study of how the authorities succeeded in reaching SMFs with their offers for aid and support in the labour‐market agenda was requested by a committee under the Council for Ministers in the Nordic countries who are attempting to keep unemployment down. SMFs' aversion towards authorities can be broken by personal, oral, lasting contacts. SMFs can be frequent measure users in that they can integrate the measures into the firm's normal life in a flexible way.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 16 August 2011

Elisabeth Sundin

The purpose of this paper is to show that not only (obviously) social enterprises but also conventional ones are based on social intentions and that these social…

3450

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to show that not only (obviously) social enterprises but also conventional ones are based on social intentions and that these social intentions often have community dimensions. The conclusion of these findings is that conventional research, and consequently, also the public debate on entrepreneurship as well as on social and community entrepreneurship, is guided by false notions rather than on empirical facts.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper starts by presenting the dominating references on entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship and community entrepreneurship and then goes on to compare them. The existence of social motives among conventional enterprises is brought to the fore, first through a presentation of the official statistics of the motives for all new starters in Sweden and then with a presentation of cases from different sectors. The cases selected to represent the starters have all expressed social motives for going into business. “Care” was the word used by the individuals themselves and therefore the care concept is introduced.

Findings

Social intentions can be found in conventional market enterprises. The intentions of the entrepreneurs' are often expressed in terms of “care”. Care for the community is often an important part of other care dimensions.

Research limitations/implications

The empirical findings of care in conventional market enterprises and care for the community as an important care dimension in the cases presented have implications not only for theories on conventional, social and community entrepreneurship but also for theory building in social sciences in general. The dominance of English‐speaking researchers can be a problem from this perspective.

Practical implications

Both the descriptions and the analysis have practical implications for everyone interested in entrepreneurship and the circumstances for enterprises of all kinds as well as for local and regional development.

Originality/value

The paper questions what is taken‐for‐granted, with the help of empirical examples and not just with statements.

Details

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6204

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 March 2016

Ingebjørg Vestrum

Community ventures are likely to increase the well-being and attractiveness of local communities. Community entrepreneurs mobilize inhabitants to actively involve them in…

Abstract

Purpose

Community ventures are likely to increase the well-being and attractiveness of local communities. Community entrepreneurs mobilize inhabitants to actively involve them in the development of the venture. To push local norms and practices, some entrepreneurs introduce external resources and impulses. Consequently, the resource mobilization process of community ventures is likely to involve a range of actors with different goals and demands. This study aims to play with four theoretical approaches to develop a multi-level, conceptual framework of the resource mobilization process. Moreover, the study discusses the role that gender may have in this process.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual framework is proposed by integrating the resource dependence theory, entrepreneurial orientation, social embeddedness and legitimacy approaches.

Findings

The author discusses how each of the four theoretical approaches can add new understanding to the resource mobilization process of community ventures. Integrating these approaches may enable the exploration of the role of community entrepreneurs, local communities and external environments in the resource mobilization process. Moreover, they enable the exploration of mechanisms that are likely to facilitate the process. The study also argues for including gender as a component of the framework and emphasizes a lack of knowledge about gender in community entrepreneurship research.

Originality/value

This study provides a conceptual framework to be used in further, empirical research into the resource mobilization process of community ventures. Moreover, the study suggests several questions for further research about the role of gender in community entrepreneurship processes.

Details

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6204

Keywords

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