Document Type



Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Business and Management.

Publication Details

International Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship, Vol.1, no.2, 2009. DOI 10.1108/17566260910969689


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the distinctive challenges faced by female travellers (Roma, Sinti and Gypsy) in starting their own business. Design/methodology/approach – The paper details a pilot “start your own business” programme that was delivered in Ireland to 12 women from the traveller community. Findings – Four distinct categories of entrepreneurship barriers faced by female travellers were recognised: self-esteem, traveller identity, welfare trap and family responsibilities. Research limitations/implications – The findings are based on just one programme and so no general conclusions can be drawn. Practical implications – The paper identifies the successes and failures of the programme, plus it highlights the future steps that need to be taken to bring appropriate entrepreneurship support to traveller women who experience triple discrimination – discrimination as women, as travellers and as traveller women. Originality/value – Very little is known about female travellers in terms of entrepreneurship activity and so this is a significant addition to a very small body of knowledge.