Chapter 2 The role of gendered institutional contexts in the rate and type of women’s entrepreneurship across countries
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This chapter analyses the role played by gendered institutional contexts in the rate and type of women’s entrepreneurship across countries. With institutional theory as our theoretical framework, we adopt a macro-level perspective in order to better understand the factors explaining the supply of women entrepreneurs in a country. In approaching different institutional contexts, we consider both formal and informal gendered institutions at the country level (political empowerment and social capital, respectively), and study their relationship with the level of female entrepreneurial activity. As well as the overall rate of female entrepreneurial activity, we evaluate the model for opportunity-driven and necessity-driven female entrepreneurship. Our empirical analysis draws on a dataset composed of 97 country-level observations distributed across 62 countries, with data compiled from several secondary sources corresponding to 2008 and 2009. Our results suggest that, with respect to opportunity-driven women’s entrepreneurship, both of the gendered institutions examined are relevant explanatory factors. Our findings open up lines for future research in the promising intersection between institutional theory and women’s entrepreneurship, and also offer important implications for policy design.

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