Research Reports

ByNWBC Council

Current Priorities and Challenges of Women Business Owners

Current Priorities and Challenges of Women Business Owners

A new report released this month by the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) outlines current policy priorities of women business owners. The report, Current Priorities and Challenges of Women Business Owners, features key policy recommendations of women business owners who participated in NWBC’s series of six town hall meetings across the country throughout 2007 and 2008. While many of the policy issues discussed during the meetings are timeless, this new report focuses primarily on initiatives the government can take to support women-owned businesses during the current economic crisis. NWBC will incorporate many of the report’s outcomes in its recommendations to the President, Congress, and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

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ByNWBC Council

Evaluating Federal Mentor-Protégé Programs

Evaluating Federal Mentor-Protégé Programs

Mentor-Protégé Programs exist in many federal agencies to help small businesses gain technical and business skills from large
prime contractors, and to build networks and experience that will help them compete and succeed in the federal contracting
landscape. Started by the Department of Defense in 1991, there are now many versions of Mentor-Protégé Programs that share
similar objectives but have different programmatic and incentive structures. The National Women’s Business Council conducted a
research initiative to learn how well Mentor-Protégé Programs are serving women-owned businesses and how they might be
strengthened to help women-owned businesses become an even greater engine driving economic recovery.

NWBC’s study focused on Mentor-Protégé Programs in six agencies: the Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Health and Human Services, National Aeronautics and Space Agency, and the Small Business Administration. The project involved extensive literature research, a questionnaire sent to 130 women-owned business protégés, and follow-up interviews with protégé CEOs and Agency program staff.

ByNWBC Council

Study of Women-Owned and Led Businesses: An Overview of the Data in NWBC’s Special Tabulations

Study of Women-Owned and Led Businesses: An Overview of the Data in NWBC’s Special Tabulations

Using custom datasets from the Census Bureau’s 2002 Survey of Business Owners and Self-Employed Persons (SBO), this report assesses the economic impact of women-owned and women-led firms on the U.S. economy by examining their receipts, compensation, geography, industry, and ethnography. This study indicates that the economic contributions of women business owners are greater than previously reported.

ByNWBC Council

Key Contributions of Women-Led Businesses

Key Contributions of Women-Led Businesses

The economic impact of women business owners has long gone understated, according to a new two-part study released by the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) today. Based on custom datasets from the Census Bureau’s 2002 Survey of Business Owners and Self-Employed Persons (SBO), the reports assess the economic impact of women-owned and women-led firms on the U.S. economy by examining their receipts, compensation, geography, industry, and ethnography. The 2002 SBO is the most current information available on the distribution and contribution of women-led businesses.

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ByNWBC Council

Voices from the Field: A Report from the National Women’s Business Council Town Hall Meetings

Voices from the Field: A Report from the National Women’s Business Council Town Hall Meetings

In March and June 2007, the National Women’s Business Council held two town hall meetings with women business owners in St. Louis, Missouri and in Portland, Oregon. The objective of the meetings was to collect viewpoints and ideas from women business owners that could inform the Council’s policy positions and their future recommendations to government leaders. This report outlines policy issues that are relevant to women business owners and summarizes the content of the town hall meetings as it relates to those policy issues.

ByNWBC Council

Explaining State-Level Differences in Women-Owned Business Performance

Explaining State-Level Differences in Women-Owned Business Performance

The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) today released a new study, Explaining State- Level Differences in Women-Owned Business Performance, which indicates that the success of women-owned businesses is impacted by particular state-level factors, such as the availability of technology infrastructure and an educated workforce. Using the U.S. Census Bureau’s special tabulations of 1997-2001 data on women-owned businesses’ (WOB) performance, the research is one of the first attempts to evaluate systematically the influence of factors that underlie state differences in WOB performance.

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ByNWBC Council

Best Practices in Federal Procurement: A Study of the Successes and Barriers for Women-Owned Businesses

Best Practices in Federal Procurement A Study of the Successes and Barriers for Women-Owned Businesses

Based on a procurement roundtable discussion held at a meeting of the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) in 2004, the NWBC commissioned a study of the best practices of small business advocates in federal government agencies. The small business office in most federal agencies is called the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU). Other agencies, such as the Department of Defense and General Services Administration, have different names for their offices — Office of Small Business Programs (DOD) and Office of Small Business Utilization (GSA). The name OSDBU not only refers to the offices themselves, but also to the advocates within them. Many OSDBU offices designate women-owned business advocates to whom the responsibility of working with women business owners falls. The goal of this project was to identify OSDBU best practices which result in more effective assistance to small, women-owned businesses involved in federal contracting.

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ByNWBC Council

Accessing Government Markets: An Issues Roundtable Discussion

Accessing Government Markets: An Issues Roundtable Discussion

The National Women’s Business Council convened a roundtable discussion of government officials and women business owners in September to air issues and concerns for achieving the five-percent goal for federal procurement by women-owned businesses. The Council has just released the transcript and summary report of this Roundtable as well as an NWBC Research in Brief summarizing the issues raised at the roundtable and program recommendations.

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ByNWBC Council

Analyzing the Impact of the Women’s Business Center Program

Analyzing the Impact of the Women’s Business Center Program

Between 2001 and 2003, the U.S. Small Business Administration provided $37 million in funding to up to 92 women’s business centers across the country. A new analysis of data provided by these centers to the SBA shows that this investment is paying off in increasing numbers of clients counseled, businesses started, and new jobs created.

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ByNWBC Council

Policy and Progress: Supporting the Growth of Women’s Business Enterprise

Policy and Progress Supporting the Growth of Women’s Business Enterprise

The historic growth of women-owned businesses in the United States has generated increased demand for the creation of innovative programs and policies to foster their growth. Today, for the first time, two new reports from the National Women’s Business Council document this progress by examining current best practices in support of women’s entrepreneurship and by recording the history of policies that have resulted in today’s unprecedented 10.6 million U.S. businesses in which women are equal or majority owners.

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