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  • 1.
    Lindvert, Marta
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Financial Barriers and How to Overcome Them: The Case of Women Entrepreneurs in Tanzania2017In: Entrepreneurship in Africa / [ed] Akinyoade, A., Dietz, T., & Uche, C., Leiden: Brill Academic Publishers, 2017, 1, p. 344-360Chapter in book (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Lindvert, Marta
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Resource acquisition and the complexity of social capital: Perspectives from women entrepreneurs in Tanzania and Pakistan2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Women entrepreneurs all over the world contribute significantly to innovation, employment opportunities and wealth creation in their respective economies. Despite their importance as drivers of development, there is a lack of research on preconditions for women’s entrepreneurship. In particular, little attention has been given to women’s venturing in developing economies. This is troublesome, since women have the potential to play a crucial role in the development of any society, not least through venturing. Entrepreneurshiphas long been recognized as one of the keys to economic developmentand numerous studies have confirmed its economic value. At the same time, a lack of capital and other resources is a crucial constraint in starting and expanding new businesses, especially in developing economies where the financial markets are often underdeveloped or dysfunctional. Further,previous research shows that women entrepreneurs face particularly high obstacles when searching for capital and other resources, as they have to overcome both formal and informal barriers.

    The aim of this thesis is to contribute to previous knowledge on women’s entrepreneurship in developing countries, by exploring and describing women entrepreneurs’ resource acquisition. The aim is further to explore the role of formal and informal institutions, as well as the role of social capital in relation to resource acquisition. The thesis is based on two field studies, conducted in two different developing contexts – Tanzania and Pakistan. Extended periods of time were spent in these contexts, where data were collected through semi-structured interviews, a questionnaire and participant observation. The focus is on how women entrepreneurs obtain access to financial and other resources. The focus is further on the role of formal and informal institutions in relation to women entrepreneurs as they acquire resources, and the role of social capital in resource acquisition. Special attention is given to contextual preconditions.

    The results from the four papers of this thesis show that the studied groups of entrepreneurs use similar financial behavior. In both contexts, women have almost no access to formal capital from banks, and have to rely on informal sources of capital and resources, mainly from family members. In Tanzania, the microfinance sector plays an important role, and other semi-formal actors (e.g. SACCOs and RoSCAs) are commonly used as well. In Pakistan, the microfinance sector is less developed. There are semi-formal actors that can be used (such as so-called “committees”) but it is more common to use one’s own savings and loans or grants from family members. Further, results show that women entrepreneurs have to navigate through a complex interplay of barriers on both formal and informal levels. Although respondents in both contexts recognize that informal contacts (such as family members, friends, and social networks) are important sources of capital and other resources, they clearly express their desire for reliable, well-functioning, formal financial institutions. Lastly, results confirm that social capital is a crucial factor for entrepreneurs. As women in the studied contexts are excluded from formal finance, they are even more dependent on informal capital, and thereby their ability to use social capital. However, it is remarkable how often their social embeddedness is not only complex but counterproductive. Results show both negative outcomes of, and limited access to, social capital for the studied entrepreneurs.

  • 3.
    Lindvert, Marta
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Patel, Pankaj C.
    Villanova University, Villanova, PA, USA.
    Smith, Célina
    EMLYON Business School, France.
    Wincent, Joakim
    Luleå University of Technology.
    Microfinance Traps and Relational Exchange Norms: A Field Study of Women Entrepreneurs in Tanzania2018In: Journal of small business management (Print), ISSN 0047-2778, E-ISSN 1540-627XArticle in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In interdependent social groups, microfinance traps occur when conflicts arise between borrowers' affective ties related to family needs and instrumental ties related to obligations toward their loan group. Thus, the social capital that facilitates microfinancing can lead to conflicting obligations toward business needs and economic obligations toward family. Building on an inductive field study among female entrepreneurs in Tanzania, we conceptualize microfinance traps. By using relational contract theory to interpret the qualitative data, we argue that microfinance traps can be reduced by balancing role integrity, preserving norms and reciprocity, and harmonizing the social matrix toward the family and loan group. 

  • 4.
    Lindvert, Marta
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Patel, Pankaj C.
    Villanova Univ, Villanova Sch Business, USA.
    Wincent, Joakim
    Hanken Sch Econ, Entrepreneurship & Org, Helsinki, Finland; Luleå Univ Technol, Entrepreneurship & Innovat, Luleå.
    Struggling with social capital: Pakistani women micro entrepreneurs' challenges in acquiring resources2017In: Entrepreneurship and Regional Development, ISSN 0898-5626, E-ISSN 1464-5114, Vol. 29, no 7-8, p. 759-790Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A crucial aspect of successful venturing is social capital. In contrast to traditional Western-oriented research where social capital is construed positively, we found that in the traditional, patriarchal society of Pakistan, social capital puts high restrictions on women micro entrepreneurs - where social capital prevents or slows venturing efforts. Results also show that although women do get some selective access to resources from family members, they are restricted by limited access to social capital outside of family members. As women entrepreneurs have the potential to play an important role in the development of any society, and especially so in developing countries, based on the insights derived from this qualitative study, we propose suggestions for further research on women micro entrepreneurs in non-Western contexts.

  • 5.
    Lindvert, Marta
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Rennemo, Oystein
    Högskolan i Nord-Tröndelag (HiNT).
    Skandinavien som arena för kvinnliga entreprenörer2013In: Kvinnors företag och företagande kvinnor: Tillväxtentreprenörer i Skandinavien / [ed] von Friedrichs, Y. & Rennemo, O., Trondheim: Akademika forlag, 2013, 1, p. 67-87Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    Både Norge och Sverige är välfärdsstater, präglade av höga utbildningsnivåer, hög grad av jämnställdhet och relativt väl utvecklde strukturer för både företagsstöd och socialförsäkringar. Trots detta är andelen företagande kvinnor förhållandevis låg. I detta kapitel diskuterar vi vad som är utmärkande för den skandinaviska företagsmiljön och vilka förutsättningar som finns för kvinnors företagande att verka i denna kontext. Vi diskuterar även hur företagande kvinnor i Jämtland och Tröndelag reflekterar kring dessa frågor, utifrån samarbetet i ett gemensamt utvecklingsprogram.

  • 6.
    Lindvert, Marta
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Widding, Oystein
    Norges Teknisk Naturvitenskaplige Universitet (NTNU).
    Bootstrapping som finansieringsstrategi för företag som vill växa2013In: Kvinnors företag och företagande kvinnor: Tillväxtentreprenörer i Skandinavien / [ed] von Friedrichs, Y. & Rennemo, O., Trondheim: Akademika forlag, 2013, 1, p. 203-221Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    Detta kapitel handlar om finansieringsproblematiken och möjligheterna till kapitalförsörjning i företag som ägs av kvinnor. Här visas på hinder och möjligheter för kvinnor att finansiera tillväxt i sina företag, med fokus på hur det ser ut i olika skeden av företagets utveckling. Forskningen kring dessa frågor bildar utgångspunkt för exemplen från de kvinnor i Norge och Sverige som ingår i utvecklingsprogrammet Kvinnor & Tillväxt. Exemplen avser att illustrera problematiken.

  • 7.
    Lindvert, Marta
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Yazdanfar, Darush
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Boter, H.
    Department of Business, Umeå School of Business and Economics, Umeå, Sweden.
    Perceptions of financial sources among women entrepreneurs in Tanzania2015In: African Journal of Economic and Management Studies, ISSN 2040-0705, E-ISSN 2040-0713, Vol. 6, no 2, p. 197-218Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to empirically investigate how women entrepreneurs in Tanzania assess their accessibility to different external financial sources. The aim is further to discuss financial preferences among this group of entrepreneurs. Design/methodology/approach – The study is based on a unique database consisting of 114 firms, obtained by a questionnaire during 2009-2010. Differences between mean values on perceptions of financial sources were tested via a paired samples t-test. Findings – Overall, the empirical results provide support for the hypothesis that the sampled women entrepreneurs perceive semi-formal capital, such as loans from MFIs, SACCOS, ROSCAS and VICOBA, as the most accessible external capital. Governmental subsidies are ranked second, followed by informal capital, such as loans from family, friends and investors. As expected, loans from formal banks are ranked as the least accessible financing alternative. However, there are strong indications that the entrepreneurs in our study, if given a choice, would prefer external capital from formal sources, rather than semi-formal or informal capital. Practical implications – The authors suggest that the formal banks work to find ways to lower agency costs and thereby work for an inclusion of women entrepreneurs, and for the semi-formal financial actors to improve financial services in ways that better serve the entrepreneurs. Originality/value – The knowledge about attitudes and preferences concerning financial solutions among women entrepreneurs in developing countries is very limited. Results from this study is therefore important, as it adds to previous understanding, especially as this particular group of entrepreneurs have the potential to play an important role in the development of their regions. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

  • 8.
    Yazdanfar, Darush
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Lindvert, Märta
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    The impact of capital structure on productivity among micro firms: Empirical Evidence from Swedish firm-level data2010Conference paper (Refereed)
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