Belarusian Economic Research and Outreach Center

Barriers and drivers of women's entrepreneurship in Belarus

We have conducted the number of interviews with female entrepreneurs and top managers of Belarusian companies. During the interviews we have identified four groups of factors that prevent women from starting up or developing their businesses. These barriers include the social pressure and family responsibilities; gaps in education; lack of managerial experience and strategic orientation; general challenges of entrepreneurial ecosystem and macroeconomic instability. We propose recommendations to stimulate female participation in business, which include: introduction of new role models; development of the infrastructure for women’s workfamily balance; promotion of academic and business education which takes into account genderspecific needs; financial and information support as well as initiatives to develop social capital.

The research was conducted within the project «Equal Rights for Women in Business in Belarus and Ways for the Boost of Innovativeness» supported by Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).