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Journal number 3 ∘ Eka LekashviliIa Natsvlishvili
Women s Challenges on Starting Entrepreneurial Activity in Georgia

The work is dedicated to the study of the challenges faced by women in Georgia when starting an entrepreneurial activity. The research was conducted using the STAR method interviews with focus groups. For the research process, a questionnaire was developed based on a test to determine/assess the potential of starting an entrepreneurship.
Gender inequality in employment, education and income distribution still exists in Georgia. Not all groups in society have equal access to employment or entrepreneurial opportunities. The majority of the population in Georgia formally shares the idea of gender equality. At the same time, a certain part of the population shares the idea of the traditional distribution of gender roles.
Empowering women for entrepreneurial career growth, in turn, serves several sustainable development goals:
• Gender equality (#5)
• Decent work and economic growth (#8)
• Industry, innovation and infrastructure (#9).
In modern economic science, entrepreneurship is considered one of the important ways of developing and increasing the competitiveness of countries, because entrepreneurs create jobs, work on innovations, and it increases GDP. Accordingly, entrepreneurship ensures sustainable development of the economy.
It was found that women's entrepreneurial activity contributes not only to family income, but also plays an important role in economic development and social welfare. The impact of women's entrepreneurship on economic development varies from country to country, as the level of development and infrastructure of these countries differ. The productivity of women's entrepreneurship and their economic contribution depends on the country's level of development and cultural norms. In most regions of the world, local ethics and cultural values strongly define the role of women, which prevents women from pursuing entrepreneurship far from their home areas around the world.
Despite the fact that entrepreneurship creates jobs, ensures the achievement of sustainable development goals, the economic activity rate of the labor force in Georgia is about 20% lower among women compared to men. Based on the above, a research question was formulated: what kind of hindering factors exist for women entrepreneurs in Georgia to start entrepreneurial activities?
The purpose of the study is to examine the challenges faced by women on starting an entrepreneurial activity in Georgia, which will help society to identify the difficulties that prevent women from choosing an entrepreneurial activity and advancing their entrepreneurial career.
In order to achieve the mentioned goal, the following tasks were defined:
• To review of modern advanced scientific literature on entrepreneurial problems to establish the theoretical-methodological base of the research;
• To develop a tool for qualitative research and conducting a focus group interview using STAR method;
• To process the results of the research in order to identify the difficulties of choosing entrepreneurial activity and entrepreneurial career for women.
As a result of the research, the difficulties that prevent women from choosing entrepreneurial activities and advancing their entrepreneurial career have been revealed. In particular, the following individual factors affecting business start-up were identified: the desire to gain independence; compared to men, women-entrepreneurs are more risky and emotional, more effective during negotiations; women face more technical and logistical problems. Among the situational factors, a gender stereotype was identified, according to which women are not considered as the leaders and entrepreneurs in modern society. Research reviled that women have less access to business start-up finance, less financial security and less support from family and friends when starting a business than men.
The results of the survey revealed the following factors influencing the business idea: women's lower efficiency in terms of identifying opportunities for starting a business; discrimination in the labor market, which forces them to start entrepreneurship; lack of awareness regarding the legal issues of starting a business; less knowledge of product packaging and export procedures; more risk and less security for women's businesses. Due to the limited number of participants in the focus group and the specificity of the qualitative research, the research results are not representative, as they could not cover all regions of Georgia and all business sectors. Accordingly, it was planned to conduct research with the involvement of a larger number of women entrepreneurs.


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Keywords: Women's entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial potential, gender inequality, sustainable development goals, STAR method of research.
JEL Codes: J16, L20, L26,