Crowdfunding in Italy - an exploration of chances and challenges for women entrepreneurs

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Crowdfunding is supposed to 'democratise' the entrepreneurship funding process, as it provides access for women entrepreneurs and investors to participate. In Italy, the barriers for the participation of women in entrepreneurship, especially with regard to funding, are particularly high. In this challenging context, crowdfunding is a promising alternative, which we explore with a context-specific study from a cultural gendering perspective. Findings reveal that the interviewed crowdfunding experts and women entrepreneurs believe that, in crowdfunding, only the idea and personal commitment count, while gender does not. Interestingly, results illustrate several barriers for women entrepreneurs in practice. Overall, crowdfunding structures in Italy currently reveal gender-based barriers, but have the potential to create a more 'open space' of entrepreneurship in the future. While crowdfunding might not be the allegedly gender-neutral environment that it is often illustrated as, it might open up the path for more women-led businesses to succeed in acquiring financial resources.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)483-504
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - 08.2022

Bibliographical note

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    Research areas

  • crowdfunding, cultural gendering, culture, entrepreneurial finance, equity-based crowdfunding, gender, Italy, qualitative study, reward-based crowdfunding, women entrepreneurs
  • Management studies