Contribution of Psychological Entrepreneurial Support to the Strengthening of Female Entrepreneurial Intention in a Women-Only Incubator

  • Pascale Bueno Merino Department of Strategy, Entrepreneurship & Innovation, TBS Business School, Toulouse, France
  • Marie-Hélène Duchemin Department of Strategy & Entrepreneurship, EM Normandie Business School, Métis Lab, Caen, France
Keywords: Female entrepreneurship, Women-only incubator, Psychological entrepreneurial support, Entrepreneurial intention, Same-gender group mentoring


This article explores the contribution of psychological entrepreneurial support, based on same-gender group mentoring, to the strengthening of female entrepreneurial intention in the specific context of a women-only incubator. In other words, it examines the combined effect of gender-based differentiation and group dynamics on the process of incubating women entrepreneurs. Indeed, according to the literature on female entrepreneurship, women entrepreneurs are faced with specific challenges that influence their entrepreneurial intention such as a lack of self-confidence, caused by gender stereotypes, and conflict between family life and entrepreneurial career. More precisely, our research aims to determine how psychological entrepreneurial support is implemented in the incubation process to overcome these specific challenges, and the mechanisms for strengthening female entrepreneurial intention analyzed at both intrapersonal and interpersonal levels. Thanks to a qualitative methodology, our findings suggest that psychological entrepreneurial support delivered via same-gender group mentoring, at the beginning of the incubation process, reinforces female entrepreneurial intention, thanks to a mechanism of external approval and a process of deconstruction of gender stereotypes about female entrepreneurship. Role modeling provided by same-gender group mentoring facilitates the identity work of women entrepreneurs in search of entrepreneurial legitimacy and enables them to overcome various psychological barriers related to a lack of self-confidence or pressure stemming from the family environment. We discuss the implications of our findings on related research into business incubators and the design of mentoring programs adapted to the needs of women entrepreneurs.


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How to Cite
Bueno Merino P., & Duchemin M.-H. (2022). Contribution of Psychological Entrepreneurial Support to the Strengthening of Female Entrepreneurial Intention in a Women-Only Incubator. M@n@gement, 25(4), 64-79.
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