Gwendoline Vusumuzi Nani, Joyce Mathwasa


Men have traditionally dominated the entrepreneurial arena because women's expected roles have traditionally been focused on marriage and the household. Despite accounting for more than half of the population, the majority of women are excluded from the formal business environment. Their contribution to the business is primarily concentrated in the areas of crafts, hawking, personal services, and retail. However, the entrepreneurial landscape has shifted, with women becoming the fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs, although anecdotal evidence suggests that highly educated women's participation in business is low. The goal of this study was to find out, if any, factors that discourage highly educated women from being entrepreneurs. The study was situated in the interpretivist paradigm, with twenty carefully chosen highly educated Zimbabwean women responding to emailed semi-structured questionnaires that were thematically analysed. The study found out that the factors that discourage highly educated women from being entrepreneurs included high societal expectations of educated women, negative attitudes towards entrepreneurship, male chauvinism, salaried job security and risk aversion. This study focused on this often-overlooked group of women who, if properly groomed, can make a significant contribution to society. The implication of the study was that women with high academic qualifications needed to develop positive mind sets towards entrepreneurship and serve as role models for prospective women entrepreneurs.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.46827/ejmms.v8i1.1403


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