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Alina Zapalska and Dallas Brozik

Alina Zapalska and Dallas Brozik advance the framework of indigenous entrepreneurship by studying the context of female Māori entrepreneurs who operate in New Zealand’s tourism industry. They document that the collective cultural, social and economic value of the Māori female entrepreneurial community has been significant not only for their own communities but also in increasing value for their clients. Māori female entrepreneurs are unique among indigenous peoples in their ability to create and innovate, apply traditional knowledge to new challenges, and draw on the riches of their traditions in their search for a better future of their communities and customers. The authors outline the elements of female entrepreneurial sustainability based on cultural, natural and environmental fundamentals in the context of indigenous entrepreneurship. They draw on four major themes of entrepreneurship – cultural and social norms, entrepreneurial capacity, organizational drivers and constraints, and land and resources – to analyse entrepreneurial characteristics and factors that enhance or curb the success of Māori female entrepreneurs. Their findings suggest that prominent barriers for growth include the lack of financial capital, inadequate human capital, and lack of adequate network structures, the availability of which would enable Māori female entrepreneurs to achieve their social, cultural and ecosystem objectives.