The aim of this research was to find out the contribution of women entrepreneurs to poverty reduction was conducted in Mubi Local Government area. The objectives of the study were to identify factors that contribute women engage in entrepreneurship, to identify the contribution of women entrepreneurs to poverty reduction, and to identify benefit obtained by women entrepreneurs. Data was collected from 76 respondents. Questionnaire, in-depth interview and observation and documentary review were used to collect data.

The study found that social background, unemployment self employment, and expand income are the major factors that contributing women to engaging in entrepreneurship activities. It was further noted that majority of women prefer to be self employed in order to get enough time to spend with their children. Furthermore expand income is another factor enhancing women to engaging in entrepreneurship activities. Factors which contribute to poverty reduction include employment opportunities, poverty reduction, women population numbers, networking, source of start-up funds, women population number. More ever in the study researcher observed that benefit obtained by women entrepreneurs are economic, expand business, trust gained from financial institutions, other benefit women entrepreneur get was to prohibit bud behaviour ,personal saving and women entrepreneurs they provide basic needs to their family.

1.1 Background of study
Poverty has been described in different ways by different scholars. Previous studies carried out by the World Bank (2001, p.4) indicate that poverty is categorized as both absolute and relative. Walkins (1995, p.41) explains that relative poverty can be categorized in relation to particular groups or areas in relation to the economic status of other members of the society. When poverty is said to be absolute, it describes a lack of basic security, the absence of one or more factors that enable individuals and families to assume basic responsibilities and to enjoy fundamental rights. Poverty results from and even consists of a lack of basic securities, which not only include financial resources, but also education, employment, housing, health care and other related aspects leading to deprivation (Gina, et al. 2006, p.5).

The World Bank (2001, p.6) has shown that lack of access to land and credit facilities is also a major cause of poverty in Nigeria which leads to economic stagnation. Low growth rates of the economy have therefore encouraged the escalation of poverty, especially in the last 20 years. The World Bank also believes that political instability, lack of improvement in infrastructure, inadequacy of national policy and structural adjustment, lack of investment are among the main causes of poverty. The report observes that even though Nigerian women have better saving habits and operate a number of small enterprises, the poverty rates among them are still higher than their male counterparts at 50 percent and 46 percent in the rural and urban areas, respectively. This is in spite of the many policy interventions meant to improve people’s standards of living. Thus, poverty is still higher amongst women in Nigeria according to Institute of Economic Affairs (2008) report survey carried out in Nigeria.

According to (UNDP) Human Development report (2006, p.8), 22.8% of Nigerians earn less than one US dollar a day while national poverty rate is at 52%, with low adult literacy rate of 26.4%. The majority of the poor are women who comprise 50% in the rural areas and 46% in the urban sector as revealed by The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) survey in Nigeria (2008, p.18). Kimani and Kombo (2010, p.2) elucidate that over the past 30 years, policies, strategies and programmes implemented, aimed at reducing poverty among women yielded limited impact as a substantial number of Nigerians continue to languish in poverty.

The rising global economic crisis which began in 2004 worsened poverty status in many countries. Not only did it affect United States of America, but this spread to Europe and worldwide with investors losing confidence in countries that were mainly affected such as Greece, Portugal, Spain and Ireland (Taylor, 2011, p.4) among others; leading to heavy debt crises. This was equally reflected in Africa with Nigeria being majorly affected in the tourism sector (Wanjohi, 2010, p.2) by cancellation of visits due to poor economic status overseas.

Ntale (2010, pp. 2-3) identified forms of entrepreneurship that can be used to reduce poverty. In his study, he points out that there is no universally accepted definition of entrepreneurship. However, there are two main approaches to defining entrepreneurship, the functional approach and indicative (traits) approach. The functional approach says an entrepreneur is what an entrepreneur does to make money. It specifies a certain function in business and deems anyone who performs this function to be an entrepreneur. While the indicative describes an entrepreneur by his/her contractual relations with other parties, his/her position in society in an effort to carry out business and create wealth.

The common form of entrepreneurship is starting new businesses, organizations or companies. The activities undertaken are different since they vary from one organization to another, but they basically lead to one goal, which is to create wealth. Kimani and Kombo (2010, p.6) explain that entrepreneurship can range from sole projects to major partnerships. In the end, they create jobs and increase income among individuals as well as raising the standards of living among citizens. It is for this reason that governments and organizations now exist to support entrepreneurs and those aspiring to become business owners, by applying various economic strategies. One of these strategies is empowering women through entrepreneurship development.

Globally, various researches conducted on the women’s participation in entrepreneurship showed that few numbers of women are participating in entrepreneurship ((Riedijk, 2011). ). However, the condition can be different from one country to another either developed or developing country. For example, Omari (1995) pointed out that in the Netherlands the number of women who engage in entrepreneurship activities is in a small scale. This implies that women are reluctant to take on entrepreneurship activities.

In United States of America (USA) the situation is not different from Europe and other part of the world. Makombe (2006) conducted a study on entrepreneurial dynamics and finally found that women are reluctant to participate in entrepreneurship which causes few of them to engage in entrepreneurial activities.

Furthermore, in Africa the situation of women’s participation in entrepreneurship activities is even pathetic (ILO, 2005). Moreover, ILO (2005).pointed out that in Africa there is a reluctance of women to participate in entrepreneurial activities. This means that the engagement of women in business activities is poor in relation to their population.

The general condition of women’s participation in entrepreneurship is in a poor condition (Steven & St-Onge, 2005). This means the number of women who engage in entrepreneurship is low compared to their existing population.

Moreover, this situation is caused by various reasons such as ignorance, poor attitudes and masculine culture that exist in the society (Stevenson & St-Onge, 2005).

Moreover, the majority of the researches conducted in Nigeria such as those of ILO (2008), Jagero (2011), Makombe (2006), Mpagalile and Ballegu (2011), and Riedijk (2011) observed that women were incapable to take part in entrepreneurship and even those few who engaging were facing many obstacles to pursue their activities accordingly.

The situation of poor participation of women in entrepreneurship has remained the same despite good efforts done by the Nigerian government (Mwasalwiba, Dahles & Wakkee, 2012). For example, in the year 2010/11, about 6,379 out of 30,000,000 women were joined up in entrepreneurship (Mwasalwiba, Dahles & Wakkee, 2012). This number is very low compared to their population. In this regard, the situation has resulted into a number of questions about how effective is this number in ensuring good performance of entrepreneurship sector in Nigeria?

Most of the studies conducted in entrepreneurship reported a lot about the women participation in entrepreneurship. Mnenwa and Maliti (2008) carried out a study on underfunding and institutional function in women group entrepreneurs and the manner it affects their participation, and the study revealed that the shortage of fund was a big reason for many women to participate in entrepreneurship.

Despite all these limitations, very little is known about the contribution of women entrepreneurs in poverty reduction in Nigeria. There is scantiness in the literature about the manner in which Nigeria’s women entrepreneurs contribute in poverty reduction. The researcher thought that it is valuable to conduct a research to investigate on how women entrepreneurs contribute in poverty reduction sector in Nigeria.

1.2 Statement of the Problem
Women entrepreneurs in Nigeria have many roles to pursue toward successfulness of entrepreneurship in Nigeria (ILO, 2008; Mfaume & Leornard, 2004; URT, 2002).

Women like any other entrepreneurs need to be recognized in terms of their contribution toward the success of entrepreneurship. However, the situation is contrary to what is expected that women entrepreneurs are few in number (Mfaume & Leornard, 2004).

Regardless of such a problem, women entrepreneurs are continuing daily to pursue their duties and no comprehensive study is done to assess the contribution of women entrepreneurs toward the success of entrepreneurship in Nigeria. Therefore, from the luminosity of the above statement it was valuable to conduct a study on assessing the contribution of women entrepreneurs toward poverty reduction sector in Nigeria.

1.3 Research Objectives
The objective of this study is categorized into two parts, which are the general objective and specific objectives.
General Objective

The general objective of this study was:

Contributions of women entrepreneurs to poverty reduction

Specific Objectives
1. To identify factors that contributes women to engage in entrepreneurship

2. To explore the contribution of women entrepreneurs in poverty reduction.

3. To explain benefits obtained by women entrepreneurs

1.4 Research Questions
1. What are the factors that contribute women to engage in entrepreneurship?

2. What is the contribution of women entrepreneurs in poverty reduction?

3. What are benefits obtained by women entrepreneurs?

1.5 Significance of the Study
This study intended to provide baseline data information which can be used by other researchers who are interesting to research on similar topic elsewhere.

The study will enable policy makers to make appropriate long lasting activities for meeting millennium goal on poverty alleviation to all people.

Moreover, this study intend to inform various entrepreneurship stakeholders such as officials in a ministry levels, regional and local government officers on how can improve participation of women in entrepreneurship.

1.6 Limitations of the Study
The following are the limitations this study may encounter. Firstly, some respondents such as the women entrepreneurs, regional and local government community development officers had stiff schedule that lead to difficulties for them to accommodate in accordance of study timetable. Looking upon this, the researcher interviewed those respondents on their convenience time so as to avoid the intervention with their daily routines.

Due to period given to the researcher to deal with the topic concerned being very short, the researcher tries to make a short but satisfactory report in respect of research objectives and questions according to the given time.

For the successful outcome, the researcher needs to be well financially equipped. Due to these financial constraints, the researcher did the best to narrow the study to meet the requirements regardless of financial constraints.

1.7 Delimitation of the Study
This study was conducted in Mubi Local Government area in Nigeria.

Additionally, the study investigated the manner in which women contribute in poverty reduction sector. The women who were be investigated are those who engage in entrepreneurship activities either as an individual or in groups. Therefore, conclusions and generalizations of this study focused only three wards in Mubi Local Government area.

1.8 Operational Definition of Key Terms
In this study, the following terms are operationalised as follows;

Women Entrepreneurs: These refer to females who engaged themselves in different types of business. This engagement can be either in an individual level or as a group (McDonald 2007)

Entrepreneurship: This refers to any business or private commercial activity whereby someone or group of people engaging for the aim of attaining profit (USAID 2006).

Female entrepreneur: is a female head of business who is accepting the associated risks and financial, administrative and social responsibilities and who is effective in change of its daily management (Olumide2012).

1.9 Organization of the Study
This research report consists of five chapters. Chapter one provides the problem and its background, statement of the problem, objectives of the study, significance of the study, and operational definition of key terms as well as limitations and delimitation of the study. Chapter two is on the review of related literature and conceptual frame work while chapter three explains the research methodology used in collecting data.

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Size: 48 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
Format: MS Word  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.


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