Academic Entrepreneurship – Gendered Discourses and Ghettos

Ylva Fältholm, Lena Abrahamsson, Eva Källhammer


In this article, based on texts on academic entrepreneurship as well as on interviews with teachers and researchers at two Swedish universities, we explore how global and local discourses of academic entrepreneurship are constructed and gendered. How can gender mainstreaming interventions be introduced in the arena academic entrepreneurship? We show that the entrepreneurial discourse is met by both counteracting and contributory discourses in academia. We also show that texts promoting entrepreneurship pictures of men address both women and men, while pictures of women are only targeted to women, often found in ‘entrepreneurial ghettos’ and conceptualized as in need of support, as less risk-willing and less willing to commercialize their research. A problem addressed in this article is how to design gender mainstreaming interventions without reproducing such stereotypes. We believe the solution is not gender neutrality, but to move back and forth between liberal feminist and more critical constructionist approaches. .


academic entrepreneurship; discourse; gender; entrepreneurial ghettos; gender mainstreaming.

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