Toronto Metropolitan University
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How do Gender and Immigrant Background Affect a Company Owner's Decision to Engage in Direct or Indirect Exporting?

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posted on 2022-12-06, 15:43 authored by Xiaojing (Sara) Wang
This research focuses on understanding the effects of gender and immigrant ownership on the export behavior of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Prior studies indicate that female and male entrepreneurs have different qualities or experiences that might result in different export strategies. In addition, there is evidence that business owners with an immigrant background have export-enabling characteristics. Drawing on insights from social capital theory, I investigate the separate and joint effects of gender and immigrant background on the likelihood of SMEs to engage in direct exporting—i.e., selling goods or services directly to foreign customers—as opposed to indirect exporting—i.e., using an intermediary to sell goods or services to foreign customers—or not exporting at all. I analyzed a sample of 78 SMEs. The results show that female-majority-owned SMEs are less likely to export directly compared to male-majority-owned SMEs. Immigrant-owned SMEs are more likely to export directly, and particularly when they have male owners. Female-majority-owned SMEs’ propensity to export directly is not affected when their owners have an immigrant background. I will discuss the theoretical implications of these findings and show how they may serve as a guide to improve the design and implementation of policies targeted at immigrant export businesses.





  • Master of Science in Management


  • Master of Science in Management

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • Thesis