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The secret letters of history’s first-known businesswomen

Around 1870BC, in the city of Assur in northern Iraq, a woman called Ahaha uncovered a case of financial fraud.

Ahaha had invested in long-distance trade between Assur and the city of Kanesh in Turkey. She and other investors had pooled silver to finance a donkey caravan delivering tin and textiles to Kanesh, where the goods would be exchanged for more silver, generating a tidy profit. But Ahaha’s share of the profits seemed to have gone missing – possibly embezzled by one of her own brothers, Buzazu. So, she grabbed a reed stylus and clay tablet and scribbled a letter to another brother, Assur-mutappil, pleading for help:

Female Business Leaders, Business and Cultural Environment, and Productivity Around the World

Female Business Leaders, Business and Cultural Environment, and Productivity Around the World

Studies of female business leaders and economic performance are rarely conducted with worldwide observational data, and with considerations on the underlying cultural, institutional, and business environment. This paper uses worldwide, firm-level data from more than 100 countries to study how female-headed firms differ from male-headed firms in productivity level and growth, and whether the female leader performance disparity hinges on the underlying environment.

Importance of Research with Impact

Importance of Research with Impact

There is a desperate need for accurate and impactful research that centers on justice and sustainability principles. We believe that organizations like ICSB are the blueprint for what the process of creating sustainable and impactful research will look like.

Productive Entrepreneurship

Productive Entrepreneurship

At ICSB, we believe that sustainable, humane, or “productive” (as referred to by the OECD) entrepreneurship is the best way to respond to the challenges we face as a global community. The challenges we face are enormous, however, as is our capacity for change and growth. This current moment is an opportunity for real institutional change, but only if we face these challenges together.

The OECD Digital Economy Outlook 2020

The OECD Digital Economy Outlook 2020

The OECD Digital Economy Outlook 2020 Wednesday, December 2, 2020, by OECDThe OECD Digital Economy Outlook 2020 Wednesday, December 2, 2020, by OECD Last week, we released the new OECD Digital Economy Outlook, our comprehensive analysis of emerging trends,...

Women to the Front

Women to the Front

Today, we celebrate Women’s Small Business Saturday. As an extension of small business Saturday, we want to highlight the critically important work that women have done and continue to do in the business ecosystem. We believe that this year’s Women-owned Small Business Saturday comes at the perfect time to highlight the potential and necessity of empowering women entrepreneurs and small business owners. Women make up the bulk of small business employees and have succeeded at creating a robust, innovative, and crucial small businesses ecosystem despite historical and current challenges to their participation in the business world.

Women Entrepreneurs – Global Impact

Women Entrepreneurs – Global Impact

This past week, members from around the business world gathered for the first ICSB Global Women Entrepreneurship (WE) Conference, a space designed for women that dare to pursue creative solutions for greater global impact. This conference comes at a crucial juncture, as MSMEs and entrepreneurs navigate an emerging and constantly changing business ecosystem. As we come together to reconsider and reimagine our world, it is clear that women play an increased and vital role in creating new, sustainable business practices.