Challenges and opportunities of women in entrepreneurship: Essays on motherhood and access to finance

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisInternal

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Women in entrepreneurship face two major challenges: access to finance and finding a healthy balance between work and family. This thesis proposes two pathways to turn these challenges into opportunities. First, when female entrepreneurs use crowdfunding for business loans, this helps them to overcome the discrimination that is often present in traditional loan markets and allows them to benefit from faster access to finance. Second, “mompreneurs” – young mothers who decide to become self-employed to balance family and work – can use parental leave to rethink their careers and start their business. Once their children reach the age of primary school education, some mompreneurs return to wage employment. Mothers with self-employment experience will not earn more than mothers that stayed home during early childhood years. However, their self-employment experience increases their chances of being employed. Therefore, reducing their parental leave not only makes them less likely to start a business but has other, long-run consequences for their careers and lives.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Maastricht University
  • de Grip, Andries, Supervisor
  • Künn, Annemarie, Co-Supervisor
Award date5 Apr 2022
Place of PublicationMaastricht
Print ISBNs9789464581195
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Female entrepreneurship
  • mompreneurs
  • crowdfunding

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