Table of Contents

International Handbook of Women and Small Business Entrepreneurship

International Handbook of Women and Small Business Entrepreneurship

Elgar original reference

Edited by Sandra L. Fielden and Marilyn J. Davidson

The number of women entering small business ownership has increased significantly across the world in recent years. These women make a crucial contribution to the economic growth and development of local, national and global economies. Yet, despite their increasing numbers, they have received comparatively little attention from the academic community. This comprehensive and coherent book redresses the balance and provides an up-to-date, theoretical review of this important area of study. A distinguished group of international contributors presents the latest work from the USA, the UK, Australia, Canada, India and Singapore, which explores practical initiatives and strategies related to the experiences of women entering small business entrepreneurship.

Chapter 14: Women Entrepreneurs in Singapore

Jean Lee

Subjects: business and management, entrepreneurship


Jean Lee Introduction In the Singapore context, compared to many western countries, research on women entrepreneurs is at an exploratory stage. Studies have focused mainly on creating an understanding of these women (see for example, Lee and Tan, 1993a) and while some have attempted to profile Singapore women entrepreneurs (Teo, 1994a), others have focused on the needs of these women and the changing patterns in their businesses (Lee, 1996). However, one of the main difficulties of conducting research on women entrepreneurs in Singapore is the lack of a database from which to draw a representative sample. Expectations of women’s role in modern society are changing rapidly. Modern Singapore sees an encouraging increase of better-educated women, greater job prospects and career advancements, and an increased acceptance of women in traditionally maledominated professions and industries. As such, the modern woman may no longer be contented with being a good wife and mother. She may aspire to establish a thriving career for herself, to carve a niche in her field of work, and to balance both family needs and career expectations. In the last 20 years, the nation witnessed an increase in female labour force participation, with an encouraging trend of self-employment among Singapore women. Between 1989 and 1999, there was a 37 per cent increase in the number of self-employed women (Report on the Labor Force Survey of Singapore, 1989–99). Local business associations and government institutions have, in recent years, given recognition to the achievements and contributions made by...

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