Month: April 2015

PhD Studentship Opportunity: Using ‘Big Data’ to Model Entrepreneurship in the Manchester City Region

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Deadline: 4 June 2015


Using ‘stylised’ big data, this study will develop pioneering evidence about entrepreneurship in the Manchester City Region and significantly inform the development of economic policy in the region as it takes up new, devolved powers of governance.


This project will adopt a ‘big data’ approach to model various aspects of entrepreneurship in the Manchester City Region. Specific objectives include:

  • engaging with owners of massive data sources to identify what data is available and what might be modelled. This data-driven approach responds to calls for the development of ‘stylised data’ that leads thinking, rather than tests existing theory.
  • analysing the Office for National Statistic’s Business Structure Database 1997-2014: this new ‘census’ of UK businesses provides area level variables and will enable complex analysis of business dynamics (e.g. birth and death rates, sector trends, employment growth and churn) by area and over time. Analysis will include how different sections of the Manchester City Region economy have responded to the recession.
  • analysing the HMRC Tax Credit database: this provides data on the tax credit claims made by ‘micro-enterprise households’. Analysis will explore the role played by Tax Credits in supporting entrepreneurship in the Manchester City Region and provide guidance on how policy makers could manage the transition to Universal Credits.
  • Comparison with other city regions or areas peripheral to the Manchester City Region where business growth is more prevalent (e.g. Cheshire and Warrington) to explore the causes of particular forms of business dynamic within localities.

Dr Julia Rouse has existing experience of supporting such analysis under an ESRC-funded project that employed two different forms of time series analysis that may be applied. The supervisory team will also draw in experts in Big Data and, in particular, longitudinal modelling.


The successful applicant will join a strong research group working in the area of entrepreneurship, including both academics and PhD students which offers supervisory and peer support. The PhD will be supervised by Dr Julia Rouse who has a wealth of research experience and is widely published in entrepreneurship.

The successful applicant will have either a Masters’ degree or a BA/BSc (Hons) 2.1 in a relevant discipline. Some familiarity with the entrepreneurship field is also desirable. Strong quantitative analysis skills are essential and experience of both SPSS and STATA would be an advantage, as would having worked with large datasets. The ability to demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills is essential, as is the ability to work independently and evidence well-developed problem solving skills.


Fully funded PhD studentships at MMU are only available to home and EU students.

Women Entrepreneurship Conference Bangkok – Call for Papers

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Abstract Submission Deadline 4th May [UPDATE: DEADLINE EXTENDED TO 20th MAY]

This British Council supported conference invites papers that explore female entrepreneurship. According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor GEM, Thailand does not only have the world’s highest rate of women entrepreneurship, but it is also one of the only countries in the world where both nascent and established female business owners outnumber their male counterparts.

The conference invites participants from both UK and Thai institutions to advance understanding of female entrepreneurship in Thailand, the UK and other cultural settings. Emphasis is placed on analysing the strengths, challenges and business models of female entrepreneurs as well as strategies to promote and support women entrepreneurship. 

The three-day conference is intended for early-career researchers in UK and Thai academic institutions (Post-Docs and within the first 10 years of their career), although applications from advanced researchers as well as PhD candidates who are in their final year are also considered. The conference will provide participants with workshop-style feedback on their papers, offer career guidance by senior researchers in the field and facilitate the building of UK-Thai research collaborations. Participants will also have the opportunity to apply their insights and skills during a practitioner day at Samutprakarn Crocodile Farm and Zoo Co., where they will get the chance to meet the successful and famous Thai female entrepreneur Patcharapimol Youngprapakorn.

Feedback will be given by fellow students and three internationally reputed researchers:

  • Prof. Erkko Autio, Chair in Technology Venturing and Entrepreneurship, Imperial College Business School, London
  • Prof. Susan Marlow, Professor in Entrepreneurship, Nottingham University 
  • Dr. Koson Sapprasert, Director of Research at BUSEM and GEM Thailand, Bangkok University

We welcome empirical and conceptual abstracts from early-career researchers (Post-Docs). Potential topics include, but are not limited to, the following areas:

  • Women entrepreneurship 
  • Cross-cultural studies in entrepreneurship (with a particular focus on comparisons between the UK and East-Asia)
  • Female entrepreneurship and innovation 
  • Business models and strategies, what we can learn from female entrepreneurs 
  • Policies and practices for women entrepreneurship 
  • Gender, identity and leadership 
  • Big data: Evidence on women entrepreneurship from GEM and GEDI 

Please click here for full details. Please do share this link with those in your own networks who you feel should be attending.

Women’s Enterprise Scotland Hosts 1st International Conference

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‘Shifting Gears’ is an international conference to be hosted by Women’s Enterprise Scotland (WES) in Glasgow on 12 and 13 May, 2015. It will be the first event of its kind in Scotland, designed to build on the global leading Women’s Enterprise Framework already established here.

Join the conversation… #WESMovingOn

WES-Logo-colourThe conference will explore the growth trend in female self-employment and small/medium business formation, particularly in non-traditional and innovative sectors. Identifying and examining the strategies and resources needed to support sustainable growth and unlock the significant potential of women’s enterprise to contribute to the Scottish economy.

Aligned with the themed actions contained in the Scottish Framework and Action Plan for Women’s Enterprise, international best practice will be used to share the journey from research findings, to policy development, to policy initiatives delivered in practice and their ultimate impact on women-owned businesses across the globe.

A range of first-class global speakers will challenge perceptions, provoke fresh thinking and highlight examples of best practice from around the world. Those insights will examine why female self-employment and business formation are a critical driver for economic growth; review the benefits for wellbeing, communities and families and the potential to reduce the burden on the public purse.