Violent conflicts have increased dramatically in the last decade, where more countries in 2016
experienced violent conflict than at any point in almost 30 years (United Nations and World
Bank, 2018, p. xvii). It is estimated that by 2030 more than half of the world’s poor will be
living in countries affected by high levels of violence (Ibid). According to the Institute for
Economics and Peace (2020, p. 4), the gap between the least and most peaceful countries is
growing, where the Middle East and North Africa region remains the world’s least peaceful
region for the sixth consecutive year. In contexts of violent conflict, many women become entrepreneurs out of necessity, where they face burdensome challenges in starting and operating their businesses. The relevant growing research body reports how women entrepreneurs in these contexts demonstrate high levels of resilience in navigating the economic, social and political barriers in their conflict-ridden states (e.g., Al-Dajani et al., 2019; Althalathini et al., 2020; Bullough and Renko, 2017; Sabella and El-Far, 2019). In this policy brief, we focus on women
entrepreneurs in the protracted conflict-ridden states of Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine.
Based on the findings from the research undertaken in these three contexts, we propose
support measures that enable women entrepreneurs to overcome some of the structural and
institutional challenges, succeed in their businesses and contribute to peacebuilding in their fragile contexts. Within our research, we adopted a qualitative approach and conducted in-depth semi-structured individual interviews with women entrepreneurs in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Palestine.
Permanent link to this resource: https://doi.org/10.24384/5CZK-QD44
Althalathini, DoaaAl-Dajani, Haya
Oxford Brookes Business School
Oxford Brookes University
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