Women entrepreneurs add to the economic well-being of countries. This study examines whether stages of economic development (SEDs) influence women entrepreneurs similarly across national settings. This study approaches the environments in which women entrepreneurs launch their businesses from two perspectives – family support and personal problems – in Canada, China, Egypt, Morocco, Poland, South Korea, and Turkey. Findings show that the relationship between SEDs and family instrumental support (financial and organizational) presents an S shape, whereas that between SEDs and family moral support is an inverted S shape. Evidence confirms that the relationship between SEDs and personal problems follows an inverted U-shape, with personal problems increasing with SEDs to an optimal point, above or below which personal problems decrease. This study exemplifies the need for joined theory and practice to influence public policy worldwide. The results are useful for further developing policies to promote women-owned business startups by understanding what barriers women entrepreneurs face and what solutions work best with the stage of country development.


  • Women and entrepreneurship have become an important research domain

  • Economic development of each of the seven countries draws based on the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) (Schwab, 2014)

  • The likelihood of the family instrumental support is highest in the factor/efficiency-driven stage

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Women and entrepreneurship have become an important research domain A few exceptions include Lee and Osteryoung (2001), Verheul, Stel, and Thurik (2006), Kobeissi (2010), and Batsakis (2014). In view of this paucity of international comparative studies on female entrepreneurship, researchers have called for more quantitative, cross-cultural, investigations exploring female entrepreneurship across countries D., et al, 2012), and under different institutional environments (Carrasco, 2014) To answer this call, this study examines data in countries ranging from Canada, Poland, and Turkey, through Morocco, and Egypt, to South Korea and China drawing on stages of economic development (SEDs)


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