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Gender, Entrepreneurship, and Informal Markets in Africa: Understanding How Ghanaian Women Traders Self-Organize with Digital Tools

Gender, Entrepreneurship, and Informal Markets in Africa: Understanding How Ghanaian Women Traders Self-Organize with Digital Tools
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Author(s): Janet D. Kwami (Furman University, USA)
Copyright: 2015
Pages: 30
Source title: Economics: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8468-3.ch042

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Abstract

Mainstream scholarship on entrepreneurship focuses on firms in the global north as the dominant paradigm, neglecting potential lessons to be found in the informal sector, in the global south, particularly in Africa, and among women. Local entrepreneurship practices present a valuable case study for understanding the nature of entrepreneurship in emerging economies and their contribution to social and economic development. Drawing on ethnographic data, this chapter examines gender and information and communication technology use in the Ghanaian marketplace. Market women's entrepreneurship is influenced by social capital derived from social networks drawn from strong community ties. The study found that ICTs such as mobile phone, while gendered, are central to organizing and managing these micro-enterprises. This chapter contributes to studies on entrepreneurship by drawing attention to the under-researched intersections of female entrepreneurship in the Ghanaian marketplace and ICTs in emerging economies.

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