DCU leads €1m project to combat gender inequality among entrepreneurs

1 Mar 2019

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Project aims to provide an understanding of how gender is a decisive factor in women’s participation in entrepreneurship, with a focus on women in technology.

Dublin City University is to lead an international project worth almost €1m to tackle gender inequalities in the entrepreneurship sector.

The collaboration comprises researchers from Ireland, Norway, Sweden and Israel, and is led by Prof Maura McAdam, professor of management and director of entrepreneurship at DCU Business School.

‘A persistent gender bias continues to exist in entrepreneurship discourse and practice’

The three-year project is worth €994,133 and it was awarded under the Gender-Net Plus EU-funded initiative, which aims to strengthen links between researchers in different countries and support gender equality through institutional change.

Gender inequality in entrepreneurship

It will generate new insights and knowledge about gender inequality in entrepreneurship while providing tools to visualise the challenges underlying gender imbalances that inhibit the process of innovation in entrepreneurship.

It is hoped that a cross-cultural comparison between the four partner countries will help to explain variations and similarities with regard to gender in entrepreneurship ecosystems.

“There is an assumption that all entrepreneurs have equal access to resources, participation and support, as well as an equal chance of a successful outcome,” Prof McAdam said.

“However, my latest research shows that women are underrepresented in successful entrepreneurial ecosystems, and that a persistent gender bias continues to exist in entrepreneurship discourse and practice.

“I am delighted to take the lead on this research project and very much look forward to working with all of my international colleagues to ultimately help attain gender equality in the entrepreneurship domain in particular, and also within broader society.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years