The Kauffman Foundation, Stanford University, and Women 2.0 are conducting an exciting new study on women entrepreneurs. Our study seeks to learn more about women entrepreneurs in technology, promote entrepreneurship among women, and help fix the gender imbalance. Women who are founding CEOs, Presidents, CTOs, and lead technologists of tech startups founded between 2002 and 2012 are invited to participate!
With women now making up nearly 50% of the labor force, gender diversity in the workplace is finally starting to improve. Sadly though, the lack of women in leadership positions continues to be a huge problem. Considering that women make or influence 80%+ of all household purchasing decisions, it’s shocking that only 15.6% of corporate seats in Fortune 1000 companies are held by women executives.
Even among new businesses, women are notably missing in leadership positions – and this is especially true in the technology startup scene. In fact, in 2004, just 3% of tech firms were founded by women. Recognizing this problem, the Kauffman Foundation conducted a gender-blind study in 2010 to learn more about women entrepreneurs and discover how they differed from their male counterparts.
Their findings surprised the tech world, debunked myths about women, and broke stereotypes about the profile of a ‘typical’ entrepreneur. The study found that both men and women entrepreneurs tended to be married with kids, have the same motivations for starting companies, experience the same entrepreneurial challenges, and share many more similarities. In short, the study suggests that both men and women could become successful entrepreneurs under the same conditions given their similarities.
But unfortunately, these theoretical conditions don’t play out in real life.
Now, the Kauffman Foundation is partnering with Stanford University and Women 2.0 to conduct a new study on women in technology. Using SurveyMonkey, we are asking women about their entrepreneurial challenges and advantages, their motivations for becoming entrepreneurs, experiences with mentorship, and more.
Diversity is incredibly important in business – it leads to better solutions, higher quality products, and growth. But the dearth of women entrepreneurs in the tech industry is hurting our ability to innovate and develop solutions to our world’s most dire problems. By collecting data on successful women entrepreneurs, we hope to encourage even more women to enter the entrepreneurial space and help fix the gender imbalance in the tech startup world.
Women tech entrepreneurs – I invite you to join our effort by participating in our brief 10-minute survey below:
Neesha Bapat is the Lead Researcher for the “Women in Technology” study at Duke/Stanford University.