Influences of gendered institutions on women' s entry into entrepreneurship

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Research and theory indicate that macro-level variables can influence the effects of individual-level factors on the economic behavior of women; however, this has rarely been examined with regard to women ' s entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship has thus far been examined from a gender-neutral perspective. The purpose of this paper is to address this gap by deriving predictions using a sociological model of gender stratification and examining the effects of gendered institutions on women ' s entrepreneurship.


Using the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) dataset comprising over 40,000 individuals across 30 countries combined with data from the Global Gender Gap Index (GGGI), the authors examined the direct as well as cross-level moderation effects of gendered institutions on the probability of women entering into entrepreneurship.


Results indicated that gendered institutions moderate effects of individual variables on the entrepreneurship of women, suggesting that in theory and research, individual factors affecting women ' s entrepreneurship should be considered within the larger cultural context.

Research limitations/implications

The findings provide additional evidence for the gender stratification theory of women ' s economic activity. Future research should examine alternative operationalizations of the variables, as well as effects of additional gendered institutions.

Practical implications

Results suggest that changes may be needed in entrepreneurship development policies in countries with cultural values creating barriers for women ' s entrepreneurship.


This multi-level analysis is derived from a theoretical framework and helps account for the rates of entrepreneurial activity found among women across many countries.

Publisher's Statement

© 2013 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Publisher’s version of record: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJEBR-09-2011-0115

Publication Title

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research