Entrepreneurial Ecosystems and Growth of Women’s Entrepreneurship
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Entrepreneurial Ecosystems and Growth of Women’s Entrepreneurship

A Comparative Analysis

Edited by Tatiana S. Manolova, Candida G. Brush, Linda F. Edelman, Alicia Robb and Friederike Welter

The renowned group of international contributors to this book provide analysis of where and how gender plays a role in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. 11 essays examine how ecosystems influence women entrepreneurs and how women entrepreneurs influence their local ecosystems, both cross-nationally and through in-depth country studies.
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Chapter 5: Assessing the relational embeddedness of women entrepreneurs in entrepreneurial ecosystems: a social network perspective

Xaver Neumeyer, Susana C. Santos and Julia Poncela-Casasnovas


This chapter examines the paths of female entrepreneurs through the lens of social network theory. We collected relational data from novice entrepreneurs, institutional leaders and investors, participating in a team-based entrepreneurship program as well as the wider university ecosystem. These two distinct ecosystem units were subsequently analyzed to compare female and male (novice) entrepreneurs’ connectivity and embeddedness. Our results indicate that the team-based entrepreneurship program created an entrepreneurial ecosystem that shrunk significantly towards the end of the program as the majority of participants did not pursue their entrepreneurial ventures. In addition, we found that the use of teams can dampen the participation of female entrepreneurs-in-training. Depending on the composition of the team and role assignment, female participants were less embedded in the venture development and formation process than male participants. We also found that male participants’ networks contain a larger proportion of investors than female participants, while female faculty and entrepreneurs-in-training were as likely to develop multiplex ties as their male counterparts.

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