Diversity of Entrepreneurships: Gender, SMEs, Immigrants and Ethnicities SPS5061

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course will examine entrepreneurship from a global perspective, in practice, history and theory. Entrepreneurship scholars have recently called for more research to embrace entrepreneurial diversity beyond the Silicon Valley unicorn model since such ventures constitute the vast majority of firms in any given economy. A major sub-theme is how these different forms of entrepreneurship affect international activities and thus moves away from standard studies of large multinationals. Another major subtheme is the role of relatively neglected forms of entrepreneurships: women, ethnic, immigrant, diaspora and refugee entrepreneurships. How do they differ from the normative (male) standards built on western European models, if at all? The course focuses especially on examples of women's involvement in business across all types of entrepreneurship. The course will be a blend of theory and real-world, historical case studies/examples taken from across the globe. Students will apply varying theories to case examples in comparative perspective in their essays.


Lecture: one hour per week for ten weeks

Seminar: one hour per week for ten weeks

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements

Entry to the IM Global Markets Local Creativities (GLOCAL) requires a 2.1 degree or equivalent

Entry to MSc in Global Economy requires 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent

If space available, Masters students from across the university may join.


25% - One case study analysis linking conceptions of entrepreneurship to a provided example (1000 words)

75% - One final research essay comparing and contrasting at least two different entrepreneurs (or groups/types of entrepreneurs) in two different countries utilizing theories discussed (3000 words)

Course Aims

■ To gain familiarity with different conceptions or theories of entrepreneurship in global, historical perspective (across time)

■ To engage critically with how different contexts (national culture, family structures, gender, industry, timing) shape entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial activities (across space), including deconstructing whether "entrepreneurs" really are individuals

■ To foster critical writing and analytical skills in students through structured writing assignments that move beyond entrepreneurial success stories

■ To learn to apply the different conceptions of entrepreneurship to individual cases as well as comparative case studies across time and global contexts, in particular emerging markets

■ To examine how entrepreneurial ecosystems and the home context shapes internationalisation and transnational behaviour

■ To expose students to relatively neglected but important forms of female, immigrant, diaspora and refugee entrepreneurship. 

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Demonstrate clearly how and why different notions of entrepreneurship matter both in theory and in concrete analysis

■ Evaluate how national-international-transnational contexts shape individual or collective entrepreneurs' experience through application and critical reflection on theories introduced

■ Develop critical writing and thinking skills for explaining entrepreneurial actions and startup processes, perhaps identifying successes or failures

■ Learn to discuss international entrepreneurship from different global contexts, in particular emerging markets

■ Understand entrepreneurial ecosystems and how they nurture startups from an economic, psychological, historical and contextual perspective. 

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.