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Most initiators in Iceland are men

According to a new research by Reykjavík University, only one out of four initiators in Iceland, who start a business as an initiative project, is female. Only one third of all initiators has a university degree.

In recent years initiative business projects, which are common in Iceland, have been researched and compared in 40 different countries. The number of initiative projects in Iceland is above average and comparable to numbers in the US. RÚV reports.

Eleven percent of Icelanders aged between 18 and 64 have participated in initiative business projects, but only 25 percent thereof are women.

“If we look at initiative projects as the driving force of change in society and in the economic life, it is unnatural for that force to be driven only by men,” said Rögnvaldur J. Saemundsson, associate professor at Reykjavík University.

One way to get more women involved is to educate young women about the opportunities initiative business projects can offer. “There is a lot of demand from women for assistance and education to help them start a company,” Saemundsson said.

There are more women than men enrolled in most university departments in Iceland and Saemundsson believes this will result in more female initiators in the future.

Yet the research showed that only 30 percent of those who participate in initiative business projects have a university degree, a low percentage compared to other countries. For example, twice as many initiators have a university degree in the other Nordic countries.

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