A Research Perspective
Edited by Candida G. Brush, Anne de Bruin, Elizabeth J. Gatewood and Colette Henry
Chapter 15: Physician as Feminist Entrepreneur: The Gendered Nature of Venture Creation and the Shirley E. Greenberg Women’s Health Centre
Barbara Orser and Joanne Leck INTRODUCTION This study explores the gendered nature of the venture creation process through the evolution of a ‘for women and by women’, public health care centre (The Ottawa Hospital Shirley E. Greenberg Women’s Health Centre – SEGWHC). The work seeks to understand ways in which gender is embedded in opportunity recognition, resource acquisition and organizational form. Building on the literature, the study presents a genderbased typology of new venture organizations and the construct of feminist entrepreneur. Theory is then tested through action-based, participantobservation and in doing so, the study contributes to the literature in several ways. First, to the best of our knowledge, no study has sought to examine how gender is enacted in the venture creation process. Second, the majority of entrepreneurship studies in the health care sector are predicated on ‘for-profit’ (primarily American) models of economic exchange. Scholars have described efficient revenue models (Hadley and Zuckerman, 2005), attributes of successful entrepreneurial physicians (Bottles, 2000), legal and ethical issues (Herndon Puryear, 1994; Kluge, 1993). Such observations may not be applicable to countries that afford universal publicly funded women’s health care. The study explores social entrepreneurship in a public health care setting. Third, only one study explicitly examined women’s entrepreneurship in the health care context. Nadin (2007) draws on a sample of female owner/operators of private health care facilities to describe the ways in which sector culture serves to ‘silence’ female entrepreneurial identity while embracing stereotypical male behaviour. She argues 284 M2401 - BRUSH PRINT.indd 284...