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Future directions for disability entrepreneurship research (CIMR Workshop)

Venue: Online

Join the Centre for Innovation Management Research on Tuesday 6 December for our online lunchtime seminar: Future directions for disability entrepreneurship research. The online debate is part of the CIMR Debates and Workshops in Public Policy series.

When considering the creation of enterprise by disabled people (Rolle et al., 2020) point to a lack of academic research in this area. In contrast to other marginalised groups such as women in enterprise (Henry et al., 2015), (Alison Rose Review 2019), migrants (Ram et al., 2017), and ethnic minorities (Bates et al., 2007).

Collaboration between practitioners, in particular the Inclusive Entrepreneur Network and the All Party Parliamentary Group for Inclusive Entrepreneurship (chaired by Dr Lisa Cameron MP) and academia (Trevor Jones, Monder Ram 2014), (The Missing Entrepreneurs, OECD 2021) (Lawton Smith et al., 2022), (Holland et al., 2022), (Klangboonkrong and Baines, 2022), has provided anecdotal and early stage research which is paving the way for a real and sustainable shift in policy directives for this sector.

These collaborations have highlighted the need for further academic research specific to disability to gain a greater understanding of this emerging sector, particularly its role within the entrepreneurial eco-system and how policy directives can support its growth.

Emerging themes for future research identify key barriers such as access to finance, combined bespoke business, health and wellbeing support, practical aids and adaptations, access to market, conflicting policy intent and administration, lack of role models and perception.

Good practice examples speak to the importance of lived experience and ethical collaboration by way of inviting disabled people to become visiting Fellows and/or co-authors ensuring future research is not done to or for but with and is proving to be invaluable in providing academically validated recommendations on sustainable policy directives in this field. 

For example, ground-breaking research currently being undertaken, commissioned by the APPG for Inclusive Entrepreneurship, sponsored by Innovate UK and in collaboration with Innovation Caucus, CIMR Birkbeck and Universal Inclusion will provide much needed insight into the very essence of the disabled entrepreneur.

The Research Project goes beyond the traditional who, why, what, where and when.  Capturing the hitherto untapped potential in terms of reducing the disability employment and pay gap and increasing the health wellbeing and socio-economic status of those who choose this route.  Of particular interest is the contribution of the disabled entrepreneur in respect of inclusive economic growth.

Methodology was instigated and designed in collaboration with disabled entrepreneurs whose representation within the project’s advisory boards, focus groups and distribution of surveys, reinforces the ethical collaboration and inclusivity of the research project.

This workshop aims to share, debate and explore the underlying assumptions and understand the current way of doing research in disability entrepreneurship. In addition, we aim to identify present challenges in researching disability entrepreneurship, including new directions for research opportunities (e.g. subject content and methodology) to generate more meaningful impact from research.

You are invited to join the discussions. There is no charge for this workshop.

Workshop Programme - Chaired by Jacqueline Winstanley, FRSA, Founder & CEO Universal Inclusion and The Inclusive Entrepreneur Network and Secretariat to the All Party Parliamentary Group for Inclusive Entrepreneurship, Visiting Fellow at CIMR Birkbeck.

13.00  Welcome - Helen Lawton Smith, Director of CIMR

13.05  Competencies Required by Entrepreneurs with Disability - Ning Baines, University of Leicester and Te Klangboonkrong, University of Leicester

13.25  Regional Inequalities in Innovation Opportunities for Ethnically Diverse and Disabled Entrepreneurs: Theory and Practice - Helen Lawton Smith 

13.45  New Venture Creation by Challenged Entrepreneurs - Wilson Ng, IDRAC Business School and Felix Arndt, University of Guelph

14.05  Bodies, Meaning and Inclusive Entrepreneurship -  Anica Zeyen, Royal Holloway, University of London and Oana Branzei Ivey Business School, Western University in Canada

14.25  Panel discussion: What are the future directions for research for disabled entrepreneurs? - Chaired by Tom Coogan, The University of Nottingham

15.00 END 


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