Women Entrepreneurs Find Success in Emerging Economies and Developing Countries

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New Book, “Women Entrepreneurs” offers inspiring case studies of women who built successful businesses with social impact – all in challenging environments.

The Wharton School’s Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania today announced the release of a new book, Women Entrepreneurs, Inspiring Stories from Emerging Economies and Developing Countries, detailing the trajectories of nearly two dozen women who have overcome societal and economic barriers to establish successful businesses around the world. The case studies are drawn from various industries and countries – ranging from a Mexican television personality, who launched her own Internet portal and magazine to a woman who founded an organic textile company in Turkey.

“Women entrepreneurs in the developing world are so important, because they can truly make a difference. In spite of decades of massive efforts to promote economic development and eradicate poverty, human societies differ vastly in terms of the quantity and quality of economic and social wellbeing that individuals can hope to enjoy during their lifetimes,” said Mauro Guillén, Director of the Lauder Institute and Editor of the book. “Women’s role in this process is complex, involving education, culture, gender dynamics, and family structures.” The book includes case studies written by faculty and graduate students.

The cases of women-launched ventures not only speak to the contributions made in their communities, but also to the overall economic development of the countries where they live and work. Development scholars and policymakers did not pay systemic attention to women as economic actors, entrepreneurs and business owners until the 1990s. Dr. Guillén offers a historical context for this previous approach and how a new appreciation for the contributions made by women is growing around the world.

The book also details some of the political and social transformations in developing countries that have contributed to opportunities for women. One South African woman, Sibongile Sambo, moved from being a Human Resources manager to launching an aviation company after apartheid was lifted. “Historically, women in South Africa, particularly black women, have not been afforded the opportunities of starting and running their own enterprises and making a full contribution to our economy. At SRS Aviation, we are taking advantage of the new political freedom to create economic freedom. It is an opportunity that my mother and aunt did not have. But I do, and intend to grab it,” said Sambo, Founder and CEO of SRS Aviation.

“Women entrepreneurs have become a key driving force in improving the state of the world. This book shows, like no other, how women from all walks of life are contributing to economic and social development globally,” said Jean-Pierre Rosso, Chairman of the World Economic Forum, USA, and a member of the Lauder Institute Board of Governors.

The book has been published by Routledge and is available for purchase at: http://www.amazon.com/Women-Entrepreneurs-Inspiring-Economies-Developing/dp/0415523486/ref=sr_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1373564676&sr=1-6&keywords=Mauro+guillen.

About the Lauder Institute:
The University of Pennsylvania’s Lauder Institute, founded in 1983, combines a world–renowned Wharton MBA with a Master’s in International Studies. Advanced language and foreign culture training, a two-month in-country immersion program, and a Master’s Thesis from the School of Arts & Sciences all prepare Lauder Fellows for the ever-evolving global economy. This year’s offerings include the new Global Program for students who are already fluent in several languages. Graduates join the diverse, supportive and committed worldwide Lauder community – continuing a nearly 30-year tradition of international business leadership. The Lauder Institute also offers an MA/JD joint degree. For more information, visit http://www.lauder.wharton.upenn.edu.

About the Wharton School:
Founded in 1881 as the first collegiate business school, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is recognized globally for intellectual leadership and ongoing innovation across every major discipline of business education. With a broad global community and one of the most published business school faculties, Wharton creates economic and social value around the world. The School has 5,000 undergraduate, MBA, executive MBA, and doctoral students; more than 9,000 annual participants in executive education programs; and a powerful alumni network of 92,000 graduates.

About the School of Arts & Sciences:
The School of Arts & Sciences provides a foundation for the scholarly excellence that has established Penn as one of the world’s leading research universities. The School enrolls 6500 undergraduates, admits approximately 250 students each year into its 32 doctoral programs, and offers a wide range of programs for lifelong learning. International studies are a vibrant enterprise at the School of Arts & Sciences. In addition to offering instruction in 50 languages, the school is home to an array of centers, programs and institutes dedicated to the study of world regions and contemporary global issues and conflicts.

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