Small Business Economics

, 37:417

How do female entrepreneurs perform? Evidence from three developing regions

  • Elena Bardasi
  • Shwetlena Sabarwal
  • Katherine Terrell
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11187-011-9374-z

Cite this article as:
Bardasi, E., Sabarwal, S. & Terrell, K. Small Bus Econ (2011) 37: 417. doi:10.1007/s11187-011-9374-z

Abstract

Using the World Bank Enterprise Survey data, we analyze performance gaps between male- and female-owned companies in three regions—Eastern Europe and Central Asia (ECA), Latin America (LA), and Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Among our findings are significant gender gaps between male- and female-owned companies in terms of firm size, but much smaller gaps in terms of firm efficiency and growth (except in LA). Part of the reason women run smaller firms is that they tend to concentrate in sectors in which firms are smaller and less efficient (in ECA and SSA). By contrast, we find no evidence of gender discrimination in access to formal finance in any of the three regions, although in ECA women are less likely than men to seek formal finance. Finally, while female entrepreneurs receive smaller loans than their male counterparts, the returns from each dollar they receive is no lower in terms of overall sales revenue.

Keywords

EntrepreneurshipGenderFinanceLatin AmericaEastern Europe and Central AsiaSub-Saharan Africa

JEL Classifications

D24J16L25L26M21O16O54

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elena Bardasi
    • 1
  • Shwetlena Sabarwal
    • 2
  • Katherine Terrell
    • 3
  1. 1.PRMGE World BankWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.AFTED World BankWashingtonUSA
  3. 3.University of MichiganAnn ArborUSA