Abstract

The role of gender within the entrepreneurial context has long been a subject of interest to entrepreneurship researchers. While research has explored various issues faced by female entrepreneurs relative to their male counterparts, we know little about how gender influences the public perception of entrepreneurial ventures. Considering the growth of controversies relating to gender issues, particularly as they relate to social media, we believe this topic is both timely and worthy of critical scholarly examination. Therefore, the basic research question we will address is: do female entrepreneurs receive different social evaluations than male entrepreneurs (i.e., more negative)? We draw from the women’s entrepreneurship (Jennings & Brush, 2013) and social evaluations (Bundy & Pfarrer, 2015) literatures and leverage a unique dataset based on a popular business pitch competition reality TV show.

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