A range of reasons is cited to explain gender differences in business
performance in Africa. Within those, the sector of operations is
consistently identified as a major issue.
This paper uses a mixed methods approach to assess how women
entrepreneurs in Uganda start (and strive) operating firms in
male-dominated sectors, and what hinders other women from doing so. The
study finds that women who cross over into male-dominated sectors make
as much as men, and three times more than women who stay in
female-dominated sectors. The paper examines a set of factors to explain
the differences in sector choices, and finds that there is a problem of
information about opportunities in male-dominated industries. The
analysis also concludes that psychosocial factors, particularly the
influence of male role models and exposure to the sector from family and
friends, are critical in helping women circumvent or overcome the norms
that undergird occupational segregation.
Campos, F.; Goldstein, M.; McGorman, L.; Munoz Boudet, M. A.; Pimhidzai, O. Breaking the metal ceiling: female entrepreneurs who succeed in male-dominated sectors. World Bank Group, (2015) 39 pp.
Breaking the metal ceiling: female entrepreneurs who succeed in male-dominated sectors