ICSB Women’s Entrepreneurship Committee (WEC)


The Women’s Entrepreneurship Committee is a Standing Committee of the ICSB.


WEC Provides intelligence and information to the deliberations of the Board with respect to women’s entrepreneurship concerns, manages the Best Paper Award for Women’s Entrepreneurship, and acts as a communications and marketing engine for ICSB with the policy, research, education, and practitioner communities.

Composition Process

The Committee is led by a chairperson, nominated by the committee, and approved by the ICSB President. The chairperson will hold the position of a Vice President of ICSB and a non-voting member of the Board. The chair will serve a one-year term. The chair will select up to twelve committee members. Members of the Committee shall be representative of ICSB’s four pillars, shall be drawn from ICSB affiliate organizations. All committee members will serve one year only.

Recap of the Women’s Entrepreneurship Forum at ICSB 2015

Hosted in Dubai, UAE on June 6, 2015

Women’s Entrepreneurship Committe Pre-Conference Form @ ICSB 2015

The ICSB Women’s Entrepreneurship Council (WEC) annually hosts a pre-conference event during the ICSB World Conference. This year, the program explored the topic “Empowerment through Women Entrepreneurship: Towards Sustainable Global Development”. Chaired by Dr. Maura McAdam, Senior Lecturer at Queen’s University in Belfast and Chair of ICSB WEC, the program brought together women from around the world to share insights on research, education, policy and practice to inspire and encourage the exchange of best practices globally.

The first speaker was Professor Katerina Nicolopoulou from Strathclyde Business School who used a survey she is conducting in the UAE as a way to identify and define entrepreneurship communities. The survey, titled ‘Entrepreneurship in the UAE’, is designed to determine the challenges facing entrepreneurs within the UAE from different perspectives to explore entrepreneurship attitudes and business perspectives. 

The second speaker, Farida Abdullah Kamber Al Awadhi, is the owner and managing director of Cinmar Design. Cinmar Design is a UAE based architectural and interior design firm. Focusing on the theme of empowerment, Farida shared her challenges starting a business as a women in the 80’s — discussing how she overcame them and how they helped to shape the firm and the leader that she is today.

Leila Rezaiguia, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Kompass provided participants with her top advice for female entrepreneurs. Having personally coached, trained and mentored hundreds of professionals across many positions in their professional career, all from different backgrounds and cultures, she has seen what it takes to be successful in any field. Her Her advice was simple yet powerful — be resilient, surrounded yourself with positive relationships, and support one another. Key messages that anyone, male or female, can apply to their personal and professional lives.

Genny Ghanimeh, Founder and CEO of Pi Slice, shared how mental toughness, strong believes and sharp intuitions are key qualities to making a good entrepreneur. At Pi Slice, Genny and her team work to create a sustainable future for micro-entrepreneurs in the MENA region by providing a platform to link Micro Finance Institutions with individuals and companies who wish to invest. After sponsoring the schooling her Kilimanjaro guide’s daughter, Genny was able to witness first hand the impact that resources can provide to individuals in need. This motivated her to launch Pi Slice, growing the business as she completed her MBA at the London School of Business. Balancing her MBA and the growth of her business, Genny understands the need to preserver while aiming to reach goals.

The event allowed all participants to have intimate discussions on the topics of empowerment and goal development — sharing their stories, advice, and best practices to assist one another moving forward in their business and careers.

WEC Webinar Series

Webinar Recordings

> > Gender and innovation – state of the art

Dr. Elisabet Ljunggren

View recording >

Meet the Facilitator – Dr. Ljunggren

Elisabet_LElisabet Ljunggren (PhD) is a Research Professor at Nordland Research Institute, Bodø, Norway. Her research interests include gender aspects of entrepreneurship, innovation and business polices. She has published work on the entrepreneurial process, the household dimensions of entrepreneurship, and policy initiatives to enhance entrepreneurship and innovation (e.g. business incubators). She has conducted studies on entrepreneurship in agriculture and innovation in experience based industries. Dr. Ljunggren has published in international journals and been guest editor of IJGE and edited several research books both in Norway and abroad. She has an extensive research portfolio and has experience from EU, international and national research projects. She is currently a guest researcher at Turku University, Finland.

> > The Interplay Between New Technology Based Firms, Strategic Alliances and Open Innovation, within a Regional Systems of Innovation Context

Jean-Pierre Segers

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Meet the Facilitator: Jean-Pierre Segers

foto JPJean-Pierre Segers is dean of the Business School at PXL University College in Hasselt, Belgium and chairman of the PXL Centre for Entrepreneurship. His main research interests are small businesses and entrepreneurship; (open) innovation and technology policy; national and regional systems of innovation; new technology based firms and biotech startups; public-private partnerships. He publishes in international journals and participates actively in ICSB and other international conferences.

2015-16 WEC Board Members


Maura McAdam, Ph.D (Ireland)
Queen’s University Management School – Senior Lecturer
Phone: +44 (0)28 9097 4815

Susan G. Duffy, Ph.D (USA)
Executive Director, Center for Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership
Babson College
231 Forest St.
Babson Park, Massachusetts 02457-0310
Phone: 781-239-6425
*Click here for biography

Zulma Quiñones, Ph.D (PR)
Professor of Marketing, Entrepreneurship & International Business
Director-Campus Learning Center/Centro Universitario de Aprendizaje
Inter American University of Puerto Rico-San Germán
P O Box 5100
San Germán Puerto Rico 00683
Phone: 787 264-1912 Ext. 7222 787 892-6154 (Direct/Fax)

Semra F. Aşcıgil (Turkey)
Associate Professor, Department of Business Administration
Middle East Technical University (METU)
06531 Ankara – TURKEY
Phone: +90(312)210-2051
Fax: +90(312)210-7962

Galina Shirokova (Russia)
Professor, Strategic and International Management Department
Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship
Graduate School of Management, St. Petersburg University
Volkhovsky per., 1-3
199004 St. Petersburg Russia
Phone: +7 812 323 84 64
Fax: +7 812 329 32 34

Cristina Díaz García (Spain)
Área de Organización de Empresas
Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales
Plaza de la Universidad, 1
Tel. +34 967 599200 Ext. 2173
Fax: + 34 967 599216

Blanca Josefina García Hernández (Mexico)
Coordinadora de Maestrías en Administración y en Gestión Administrativa
Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo
Instituto de Ciencias Económico Administrativas
Campus La Concepción
Libramiento a La Concepción, km. 2.5,
San Juan Tilcuautla, Mpio. de San Agustín Tlaxiaca, Hgo.
C.P. 42160. México.
Telephone 52-771- 7172000 ext. 4142
Skype: blancagarcia28

Sunanda Easwaran (India)

Sujata Mangaraj, Ph.D. (India)
Dean, Management Studies
Regional College of Management Autonomous
Chakadola Vihar, Chandrasekharpur, Bhubaneswar-751023
Phone: 9090080802 (M) / 9338104870 (M) /0674-2302633
Fax: 0674-2302633
E-mail: /

Wang Weili (China)
Vice Chairman of Qingdao Feiyang Vocational and Technical College
Hanhai Mid-Road, Qingda Industrial Area, Chengyang District Qingdao,
China 266111
Phone: +86 13706421819

María Fernanda Andres (Argentina)
Mg. María Fernanda Andrés
Coordinadora Programa Emprendedores
Dirección de Desarrollo Productivo
Secretaría de Vinculación Tecnológica y Desarrollo Productivo
Phone/Fax: 54 342 4555135 – 4551211 int. 108
Edificio Jorge Sábato. Pasaje Martínez 2626

Interested in Joining? Contact the WEC today!

9 + 14 =

Partners & Resources


The National Women’s Business Council is a U.S.-based, Federally-funded, public policy advisory body created to serve as an independent source of advice to the U.S. President, Congress, and others on economic issues of importance to women business owners. The Council’s mission is to: conduct research on issues of importance to women business owners and their organizations; communicate these findings widely; connect the women’s business community to public policy makers; and provide programs and platforms for change in order to expand and improve opportunities for women business owners and their enterprises.

Direct Selling Education Foundation (DSEF) serves the public interest by advancing the direct selling industry’s support of consumer rights and protection, education about the industry, ethical leadership, and individual economic empowerment. We are a trusted, long-term participant in the international consumer movement while increasing our efforts in the area of corporate social responsibility. We expand knowledge of direct selling to a wide range of educational systems while bringing the direct selling attributes of business literacy, self-esteem, opportunity and leadership to all individuals and especially to women.

Women’s Leadership Resources

Women’s Entrepreneurship Development and Gender Equality
IFP/SEED gives special emphasis to “Increasing economic opportunities for women”, and to Gender Mainstreaming. The Women’s Entrepreneurship Development and Gender Equality (WEDGE), spearheads SEED’s work in this field.

In the English language, a “wedge” is used to pry something open. The word symbolizes prying open access to resources, access to economic opportunities, access to markets, and access to decision-making and control mechanisms to enable women to establish and grow their own enterprises.

Quantum Leaps Inc.
Quantum Leaps, Inc., is a non-profit organization created to promote women in business globally. Quantum Leaps helps women in businesses make big economic strides by connecting key stakeholders, distributing timely information and best practices within and across countries, and linking effective programs with resources.

International Finance Corporation (IFC)
Our mission is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives.

Global Entrepreneurship Monitor
website: (for copy of GEM 2004 Report on Women and Entrepreneurship)

Domestic Links

National Association of Women Business Owners
The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) is the voice of America’s 10.6 million women-owned businesses. Since 1975, NAWBO has helped women to evolve their businesses by sharing resources and providing a single voice to shape economic and public policy.

National Women Business Council
The National Women’s Business Council is a bi-partisan federal advisory council created to serve as an independent source of advice and policy recommendations to the President, Congress, and the U.S. Small Business Administration on economic issues of importance to women business owners. The Council’s mission is to promote bold initiatives, policies, and programs designed to support women’s business enterprises at all stages of development in the public and private sector marketplaces — from start-up to success to significance.

Women Business Research
The Center for Women’s Business Research is the premier source of knowledge about women business owners and their enterprises worldwide.

International Links

Asian Women in Business
Asian Women in Business (AWIB) is established to assist Asian women to realize their entrepreneurial potential. AWIB fills a vital need for women who need information, education and networking opportunities to start or expand their business. AWIB sponsors conference’s, workshops, provide individual technical assistance, and serve as a support mechanism for small business owners.

Commonwealth Business Women’s Network
The Commonwealth Business Women’s Network (CBWN) is a division of the Commonwealth Business Council (CBC) and draws its strength from the CBC’s global network compromising political and business leaders in the 52 member states of the Commonwealth and beyond. The CBWN works with Businesses & Governments to support gender-mainstreaming initiatives. The CBWN mandate extends to providing global outreach and networking opportunities for women entrepreneurs; creating the linkages between private sector and governments and working with partners to set up “knowledge networks” which would provide invaluable support and advice on funding, sustainability and growth for women entrepreneurs.

Prowess is the UK association of organizations and individuals who support women to start and grow businesses, through the development of an effective women-friendly business support infrastructure and enterprise culture. Prowess achieves this by raising awareness, providing capacity building support to organizations which provide enterprise support services and by lobbying and advocacy at national, regional, European and local levels.

World Association of Women Entrepreneurs
FCEM is a non-profit, non-governmental, non-political and non-sectarian organization whose activities at the national and international level are aimed at promoting women’s entrepreneurial initiative and reinforcing national associations of women business owners.

Women into the Network (UK School Affiliated)
Women into the Network (WIN) uses networking, to breakdown barriers, which stand in the way of women’s success in business. They offer a whole range of services, including an online directory, networking events and training workshops. The vision of WIN is of progressive and open network where women can learn how to get ahead and pursue their ambitions in an open and supportive environment.

Women Investing in Skills for Entrepreneurship
This program is through the University of Salford and is specifically geared towards women. The program offers training and aims to develop skills to help overcome the barriers faced when running a business. It offers traditional workshops, seminars, mentoring and networking opportunities.


Key publications for your women’s enterprise development reference shelf! courtesy of Womenable

Here is a listing – including links – of past ICSB-IJGE-NWBC Best Paper Award winners at the annual ICSB World Conference each June. Click on the title to view the paper.

International Council for Small Business-International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2010 – Williams, C; Gurtoo, A (United Kingdom & India), “Evaluating women entrepreneurs in the informal sector: marginalisation dynamics or rational economic choice?” (June 2010)

International Council for Small Business-International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2009 – Roomi, Muhammad Azam (United Kingdom), “Entrepreneurial Capital, Social Values and Islamic Traditions: Growth of Women-Owned Enterprises in Pakistan?” (June 2009)

International Council for Small Business-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2008 – McAdam, Marlow (United Kingdom), “The Business Incubator and the Female High Technology Entrepreneur: A Perfect Match?” (June 2008)

International Council for Small Business-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2007 – Orser, Spence, Riding, Carrington (Canada), “Export Propensity and Performance: Understanding the Influence of Owner Gender” (June 2007)

International Council for Small Business-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2006 – Shaw, Lam, Carter, Wilson (United Kingdom), “Theory, Practice and Policy: An Integrated View on Gender, Networks and Social Capital” (June 2006)

International Council for Small Business-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2005 – Adetayo, Makinde, Adetayo (Nigeria), “Evaluation of Policy Implementation in Women Entrepreneurship Development” (June 2005)

International Council for Small Business-National Women’s Business Council: Best Paper in Women’s Entrepreneurship, 2004 – Saffu, Manu (Canada, Ghana), “Strategic Capabilities of Ghanaian Female Business Owners and the Performance of Their Ventures” (June 2004)