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Female Hires and the Success of Start-up Firms


  • Weber, Andrea

    (Central European University)

  • Zulehner, Christine

    (University of Vienna)


In this paper we investigate the relationship between females among the first hires of start-up companies and business success. Our results show that firms with female first hires have a higher share of female workers at the end of the first year after entry. Further, we find that firms with female first hires are more successful and stay longer in the market. We conclude that our results support the hypothesis that gender-diversity in leading positions is an advantage for start-up firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Weber, Andrea & Zulehner, Christine, 2009. "Female Hires and the Success of Start-up Firms," IZA Discussion Papers 4568, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4568

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Thomas Hellmann & Manju Puri, 2002. "Venture Capital and the Professionalization of Start‐Up Firms: Empirical Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 169-197, February.
    2. Nina Smith & Valdemar Smith & Mette Verner, 2006. "Do women in top management affect firm performance?A panel study of 2,500 Danish firms," International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, vol. 55(7), pages 569-593, October.
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    6. Andrea Weber & Christine Zulehner, 2014. "Competition And Gender Prejudice: Are Discriminatory Employers Doomed To Fail?," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 492-521, April.
    7. Rachel Croson & Uri Gneezy, 2009. "Gender Differences in Preferences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(2), pages 448-474, June.
    8. Ana Rute Cardoso & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2010. "Female-Led Firms and Gender Wage Policies," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 64(1), pages 143-163, October.
    9. Josef Zweim�ller & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer & Rafael Lalive & Andreas Kuhn & Jean-Philippe Wuellrich & Oliver Ruf & Simon B�chi, 2009. "Austrian social security database," IEW - Working Papers 410, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
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    More about this item


    firm survival; profitability; female employment; discrimination; market test; matched employer-employee data;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance

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