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    Female entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia: opportunities and challenges

    Danish, A.Y. and Lawton Smith, Helen (2012) Female entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia: opportunities and challenges. International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship 4 (3), pp. 216-235. ISSN 1756-6266.

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    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the challenges facing female entrepreneurs in Saudi Arabia. Design/methodology/approach – The study draws on secondary data on the context to women's entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia, and on Brush et al.'s 5M framework to analyse the results of a survey of 33 Saudi women entrepreneurs in Jeddah in a variety of commercial sectors. The sample consists of female entrepreneurs who are already in business or in the process of establishing one, and who operate from a dedicated business premises away from home. In particular the study investigated the challenges and constraints faced, and the support and opportunities available for these female entrepreneurs. Findings – It was found that female entrepreneurs in Saudi Arabia are now establishing and managing more small and medium sized entities than at any time in the past and this trend is growing. This is in spite of significant challenges, both societal and institutional. Practical implications – The research suggests a number of ways in which institutions of state and trade – which often act as barriers to women practically running a business – could be overcome. These include provision of resources, training and mentoring, and eliminating some of the administrative procedures which require male representation in the establishment and financing female entrepreneurship. Originality/value – The paper presents original research on the growing phenomenon of female entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia. It positions explanations for this trend in the macro and micro economic context and in conceptualisations of female entrepreneurship.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Entrepreneurialism, Female entrepreneurship, Gender, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Business and Law > Birkbeck Business School
    Research Centres and Institutes: Innovation Management Research, Birkbeck Centre for
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2013 11:34
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:02


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