How vague entrepreneurial identities of Swedish women entrepreneurs are performed by government financiers

Aija Voitkane*, Jeaneth Johansson, Malin Malmström, Joakim Wincent

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


Aija Voitkane, Jeaneth Johansson, Malin Malmström and Joakim Wincent explore the myth of women’s underperformance as reflected in Swedish governmental financiers’ social interactions when they analyse ventures for investment. Given Sweden’s reputation of being far ahead of other countries in terms of gender-equality issues, one may wonder why women in Sweden are still severely under-represented in entrepreneurship. The authors employ Butler’s theory of identity in conceptualizing financiers’ process of performing gender and entrepreneurial identity in discussions to offer a model that elaborates on the myth of women entrepreneurs’ underperformance. Observing governmental financiers’ meetings, they consider culture and the discourse that takes place in financiers’ performance of entrepreneurial identities and, thus, the construction of the underperformance myth. The authors adopt a symbolic-interpretative lens to explain how men and women financiers interpret and attribute meanings to gender relationships in their assessment work. They also show that such interpretations can influence their interactions both within their organization and with the ventures that apply for financing.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWomen Entrepreneurs and the Myth of 'Underperformance' : A New Look at Women's Entrepreneurship Research
EditorsShumaila Yousafzai, Alain Fayolle, Adam Lindgreen, Colette Henry, Saadat Saeed , Shandana Sheikh
Place of PublicationCheltenham
PublisherEdward Elgar
Publication date2018
ISBN (Print)9781786434494
ISBN (Electronic)9781786434500
Publication statusPublished - 2018
MoE publication typeA3 Book chapter


  • 512 Business and Management
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Gender and management


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