Analyzing the entrepreneurial ecosystem for women entrepreneurs: A study of rural Jamshoro, Pakistan

Aisha Memon .

Abstract


Purpose: The outcomes of women’s access to entrepreneurial resources and opportunities can be very different from
those of men. This study aimed to analyze the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Jamshoro, Pakistan, which includes
policy, finance, institutions, human capital, culture, and markets through a gender lens, assess women entrepreneurs’
access to it, and examine the effectiveness of its elements. Methodology: The study adopts qualitative research
methodology. Data were drawn from desk research, 30 in-depth, semi-structured interviews and one focus group
discussion with 10 women entrepreneurs in rural Jamshoro, Pakistan. The data were analyzed using Atlas.ti software
and coding was done using thematic analysis. Findings: The findings show that women entrepreneurs have partial
access to the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Jamshoro. Furthermore, there is lack of awareness and knowledge among
women entrepreneurs about available financial resources, lack of knowledge about laws and policies, an absence of
familial, cultural, and societal support for women in accessing the entrepreneurial ecosystem, the absence of quality
business training and unavailability of physical and technological infrastructure in rural areas, presence of stereotypical
attitude toward women entrepreneurs, and limited access to markets and business networks. Implications: The
existing entrepreneurial ecosystem in Jamshoro can be improved through coordinated multi-stakeholder initiatives,
adopting a gender-inclusive approach, interventions aimed at increasing awareness about the resources, promoting an
understanding about the laws and regulations, making institutions more effective in providing services, establishing
public-private partnerships, and providing the women entrepreneurs easy access to market and financial resources.
Originality: While there have been studies on challenges faced by women entrepreneurs in Pakistan, their motivation
and aspirations, there is no study conducted on their access to the entrepreneurial ecosystem as a whole.


Keywords


Entrepreneurial ecosystem, entrepreneurship ecosystem, entrepreneurship, women entrepreneurs Pakistan, women entrepreneurs

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