Inclusive Entrepreneurship

Policy Highlights


Understanding Inclusive Entrepreneurship

What is inclusive entrepreneurship?

Inclusive entrepreneurship policies aim to ensure that all people, regardless of their personal characteristics and background, have an opportunity to start and run their own businesses. Governments can do more to unlock the entrepreneurial potential among groups such as women, immigrants, youth, seniors, the unemployed and people who experience disability.

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What are governments doing?

Governments have a range of tools at their disposal to help “level the playing field” in entrepreneurship. This includes direct measures such as tailored training, coaching and mentoring, microfinance, as well as indirect measures that seek to influence social attitudes about entrepreneurship and the framework conditions for business creation and self-employment.

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Is the gender gap in entrepreneurship closing?

Policy needs to do more to cultivate women’s entrepreneurial aspirations, address market failures in the areas of skills and finance, and improve access to networks and support for growth-oriented entrepreneurs.


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What is the potential for youth entrepreneurship?

Most countries and regions use various youth entrepreneurship policies and programmes to encourage and support youth in business creation. The approaches include entrepreneurship education, training, coaching and mentoring, business incubators, and start-up financing.


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Key topics


  • Access to finance (microfinance, loans, guarantees, crowdfunding, etc.)
  • Business development services
  • Business incubators and accelerators
  • Culture and informal institutions
  • Entrepreneurship networks and ecosystems
  • Entrepreneurship skills (training, coaching and mentoring, etc.)
  • Evaluation
  • Immigrant entrepreneurship
  • People that experience disability
  • Regulatory institutions
  • Self-employment
  • Senior entrepreneurship
  • Unemployment to self-employment
  • Women's entrepreneurship
  • Youth entrepreneurship


What can the OECD offer?


We offer policy analysis and advice on policies and programmes that support women, youth, seniors, the unemployed, migrants, people with disabilities in business creation and self-employment.

This covers thematic work in the Missing Entrepreneurs reports and policy briefs (e.g. does digitalisation make entrepreneurship more inclusive?), as well as analysis and advice that is tailored to the needs of different regions and countries.

The OECD can support national, regional and local governments in strengthening the design and implementation of entrepreneurship support for specific population groups such as women, youth, immigrants and the unemployed.

Work with the Better Entrepreneurship Policy Tool

The OECD and European Union created the Better Entrepreneurship Tool to support policy makers in designing and
delivering entrepreneurship policies for women, youth, migrants and the unemployed.

See our work

The Missing Entrepreneurs

This series presents data, policy analysis, good practice policy examples and policy advice on designing and implementing inclusive entrepreneurship policies and programmes.

View the reports here

Inclusive Business Creation

This compendium contains 20 case studies of public programmes in European countries that are successfully supporting business creation by people from disadvantaged and under-represented groups in entrepreneurship.

Read the report here

Policy briefs

We regularly publish short policy notes on a wide range of topics related to inclusive entrepreneurship. These  explain the issue, discuss the policy implications and offer policy lessons.

View the reports here

Country assessment notes

We regularly examine policies and programmes at the national, regional and local levels and offer policy advice.

View country-specific reports here

Contact us

For further information, please contact  Jonathan Potter, David Halabisky and Cynthia Lavison.