Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to compare the entrepreneurial activity, attitudes and social connections of four groups of ethnic minority females in the UK, with the aim of examining the extent of gender and ethnic background effects on nascent start‐up activities and the attitudes of women belonging to these ethnic minority groups. Design/methodology/approach – A two‐stage approach is adopted to examine the situations of four main female ethnic minority groups using data from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) adult population survey for the UK. The first stage adopts a binary logistic approach to determine the importance of social networks, opportunity perception and risk aversion to the probability of being involved in nascent entrepreneurial activities. The second stage of analysis examines the differences in these perceptual variables to determine the extent to which different female ethnic minority groups are embedded in different social environments when attempting to start a business. Findings – There are considerable differences amongst different ethnic groups in the level of entrepreneurial activity by women, their attitudes towards entrepreneurship, and the social capital available to them when starting a business. Practical implications – The findings suggest that policy makers should take the differences by ethnic groupings into account when developing bespoke development policies designed to alleviate the barriers faced by women. Originality/value – The paper is one of the first comparative studies focusing on women from different ethnic backgrounds. Rather than assuming homogeneity, or examining specific groups in isolation it allows the different conditions faced by prospective entrepreneurs from each group to be examined.
International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 8, 2009
Keywords: Ethnic minorities; Entrepreneurialism; Business formation; Women; United Kingdom