Women’s Economic Empowerment through Tourism: A Case Study of Selected Western Balkans Countries
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Tourism is considered to be an essential means of empowering women in the national, regional and global economy, presenting both opportunities for gender equality and women’s empowerment. However, the general lack of women’s empowerment worldwide calls for research. This paper investigates opportunities for women to improve their socioeconomic status through tourism in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and Serbia. Its methodology is based on qualitative research. A survey was conducted on a sample of 388 female respondents engaged within the tourism sector from these countries. The results are presented through descriptive methods, comparing the attitudes of women 18 to 65 years of age, their respective levels of education and barriers within entrepreneurship activities in tourism. The data obtained were analyzed in accordance with the objectives of this study and the research questions posed. It is found that training and further education as well as providing financial assistance would significantly assist women in opening their own tourism business within the region. The study also finds that women generally report financial support as a crucial factor in helping support business in the tourism sector.
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