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Gender discrimination and lending to women: The moderating effect of an international founder

Samuel Anokye Nyarko

International Business Review, 2022, vol. 31, issue 4

Abstract: Much of the microfinance rhetoric revolves around fighting female poverty, which is often the result of discriminatory gender norms. Also, the microfinance industry has always been influenced by foreign actors, who, according to the literature, promote women’s empowerment. Yet, little is known about how microfinance institutions’ (MFIs) outreach to women is affected by the interplay between societal norms and the actions of these foreign actors. In response, this study draws on two streams of institutional theory, institutional logics perspective and institutional work theory, to investigate the influence of gender discrimination on microfinance outreach to women and to test the moderating effect of an international founder. Using data on 213 MFIs from 65 countries, the results show that gender discrimination negatively impacts microfinance outreach to women, but that the negative effect is mitigated by having an international founder. These findings are discussed, and several avenues are opened for future research.

Keywords: Microfinance; International founder; Gender discrimination; Institutional logics perspective; Institutional work theory; Women’s empowerment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F23 G21 J17 O50 P36 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1016/j.ibusrev.2022.101973

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