This publication examines how to strengthen the scope and effectiveness of entrepreneurship policies for women. It examines both dedicated measures for women and ensuring that mainstream policies for all entrepreneurs are appropriate for women. Evidence is offered on the gender gap in entrepreneurship and its causes. At the heart of the report are 27 policy insight notes by leading international experts on the role of public policy in facilitating entrepreneurship by women and how policies can be strengthened. They highlight many long‑standing issues related to the scope and effectiveness of women’s entrepreneurship policies – many of which have been exacerbated by the COVID‑19 pandemic – and point the way to more effective policy. Issues addressed include fostering a gender‑sensitive entrepreneurship culture, building entrepreneurship skills for women, improving women’s access to financial capital, supporting networks for women entrepreneurs and creating supportive regulatory environments. Issues in the design and delivery of policy support are also addressed. The report was prepared by the OECD in collaboration with members of the Global Women’s Entrepreneurship Policy Research Project (Global WEP), a network of established researchers from over 30 counties.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and entrepreneurs are fundamental to innovation, economic growth and job creation, and play a critical role in social cohesion. This series provides a means for assessing and improving the performance, design and implementation of SME and entrepreneurship policies, and for sharing policy experiences among OECD member countries and partner economies. They are based on a standard methodology, including a diagnostic questionnaire completed by national authorities, study missions and fieldwork, and are peer reviewed by the OECD Working Party on SMEs and Entrepreneurship.