Abstract

Female entrepreneurs play an important role in economic growth and poverty reduction (Allen et al., 2007). Empirical evidence, however, shows that women are less likely to become entrepreneurs (Bosma & Levie, 2009). This can be partly attributable to the fact that entrepreneurship has been traditionally framed as a masculine career (Ahl, 2006). Consequently women in general have a low intention to become an entrepreneur (Shane, 2008). That said, some women do have a strong entrepreneurial intention (EI), particularly in a feminine industry (Gupta et al., 2009; Kelley et al., 2015). To what extent these women, compared to men, will act on their intentions? Answering this question is essential to understand the low startup rates among women. Drawing on social role theory (Eagly, 1987) and Ajzen’s (1991) theory of planned behavior, we thus test: a) the degree to which EI predict startup behavior; b) whether the predictive power of EI on actual startup behavior differs between women and men.

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