Entrepreneurship and Gender Equality in Academia – a Complex Combination in Practice

  • Britt-Inger Keisu Department of Sociology, Umeå University
  • Lena Abrahamsson Luleå University of Technology
  • Malin Rönnblom Umeå Centre for Gender studies, Umeå University
Keywords: Innovation & productivity, Gender, ethnicity, age & diversity, Organization & management

Abstract

This article takes as its starting point two current trends in academia – the promotion of academic entrepreneurship and innovation and the promotion of gender equality – and discusses how different gender equality perspectives are interwoven, or not, into academia’s transformation processes towards entrepreneurial universities. On the basis of an analysis of 26 interviews conducted with personnel at two Swedish universities, the article investigates how concepts of academic entrepreneurship and innovation on the one hand and gender equality on the other hand are constructed and filled with meaning as well as how they are entangled and what effects are produced by this way of thinking and acting. Our analysis reveals tensions between the two policy goals, together with tensions within each goal. An overall conclusion is that articulations and ways of speaking about the policy goal of academic entrepreneurship and innovation were to some extent interwoven with the policy goal of gender equality, especially in the broader perspectives on academic entrepreneurship. However, the articulations of strategies and practice of the two policy goals essentially ran parallel, and were not entangled with one another. This is because strategies or substantial initiatives for merging gender equality into the agenda of academic entrepreneurship and innovation were lacking.

Author Biographies

Britt-Inger Keisu, Department of Sociology, Umeå University

Senior lecturer. email: britt-inger.keisu@umu.se

Lena Abrahamsson, Luleå University of Technology

Professor, Division of Human Work Science

Malin Rönnblom, Umeå Centre for Gender studies, Umeå University

Associate professor

Published
2015-03-01
How to Cite
Keisu, B.-I., Abrahamsson, L., & Rönnblom, M. (2015). Entrepreneurship and Gender Equality in Academia – a Complex Combination in Practice. Nordic Journal of Working Life Studies, 5(1), 69-92. https://doi.org/10.19154/njwls.v5i1.4766
Section
Articles