Research Seminar

Gender Norms and Institutions and the Growth of Female Businesses: Evidence From Trade Data – Holger Görg

19 Mar 2024

24105 Kiel
Kiel Institut für Weltwirtschaft, Kiellinie 66


Holger Görg (Kiel Institute; Kiel University (CAU))


There is ample evidence for developing and developed countries alike that female-run firms perform worse than their male-run counterparts. In this paper, we provide new evidence on how gender norms and institutions can act as a constraint to the growth of female-run businesses. To this aim, we exploit novel and unique micro data on start-ups in Denmark, which we combine with information on individual-level characteristics of the entrepreneur as main decision maker of the firm, as well as detailed trade data. We first show that performance differences are also observable in terms of the export and import activity of firms. Next, we provide evidence that the gender gap in export activity becomes exacerbated in countries with higher gender inequality and more severe institutional biases against women, though this is not the case for imports. Our analysis underscores how gender disparities in export markets can impede the growth of female-led startups in a globalized world. 


Holger Görg (Kiel Institute; Kiel University (CAU)) – Ina C. Jäkel (Aarhus University)


Lecture Hall (A-032)