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Female entrepreneurship in the wine sector: the role of identity in small and medium-sized wineries’ formation, growth and response to Covid-19


  • Cinzia Colapinto

    (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice)

  • Vladi Finotto

    (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice)

  • Christine Mauracher

    (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice)


The increasing interest in female entrepreneurship advanced our understanding of how psychological and personality traits and the contextual factors surrounding the decision of women to become founders influence their ways of establishing and managing organizations. Recent literature points to the fact that the differences among men and women as founders and leaders of organizations might exist also when major crises happen: in front of radical changes and events that abruptly disrupt the processes and operations of firms, women might manage situations in a peculiar way. From this perspective, Covid-19 represents a fruitful testbed. The onset of the pandemic had social and economic consequences at global level: the outbreak has caused major disruptions in supply chains and shifts in consumption patterns. Relevant current questions are how Covid-19 pandemic has been affecting female entrepreneurs and how resilient they were. The paper looks at women-owned wineries in the Northern part of Italy as an interesting case: indeed, the wine industry has been traditionally a male-dominated industry and it has been heavily impacted by the covid-19 pandemic. Through qualitative research we explore how female wineries were able to change their direction or implement new services. We find that women weigh strategic choices such as using e-commerce with the need to maintain extant relationships, make decisions influenced by the need to preserve communities and rely on peer-networks to provide mutual support.

Suggested Citation

  • Cinzia Colapinto & Vladi Finotto & Christine Mauracher, 2021. "Female entrepreneurship in the wine sector: the role of identity in small and medium-sized wineries’ formation, growth and response to Covid-19," Working Papers 06, Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia.
  • Handle: RePEc:vnm:wpdman:183

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hamelin, Nicolas & Thaichon, Park & Abraham, Christopher & Driver, Nicholas & Lipscombe, Joe & Pillai, Jayarethanam, 2020. "Storytelling, the scale of persuasion and retention: A neuromarketing approach," Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, Elsevier, vol. 55(C).
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    3. Brush, Candida & Ali, Abdul & Kelley, Donna & Greene, Patricia, 2017. "The influence of human capital factors and context on women's entrepreneurship: Which matters more?," Journal of Business Venturing Insights, Elsevier, vol. 8(C), pages 105-113.
    4. Lia Bryant & Bridget Garnham, 2014. "The Embodiment of Women in Wine: Gender Inequality and Gendered Inscriptions of the Working Body in a Corporate Wine Organization," Gender, Work and Organization, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(5), pages 411-426, September.
    5. Friederike Welter & Ted Baker & David B. Audretsch & William B. Gartner, 2017. "Everyday Entrepreneurship—A Call for Entrepreneurship Research to Embrace Entrepreneurial Diversity," Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, , vol. 41(3), pages 311-321, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Maria Alebaki & Maria Psimouli & Stella Kladou & Foivos Anastasiadis, 2022. "Digital Winescape and Online Wine Tourism: Comparative Insights from Crete and Santorini," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 14(14), pages 1-16, July.

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    More about this item


    wineries; digitalization; Covid-19 pandemic; female entrepreneurship; crisis management;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • L66 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Food; Beverages; Cosmetics; Tobacco
    • M19 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - Other

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