Women on the edge of a breakthrough? A stereotype threat theory of women’s angel investing

Richard Harrison, Tiago Botelho, Colin M Mason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The extent to which women participate in the angel investment market has become an increasingly important topic of research and policy interest. Based on UK survey data we demonstrate that there are systematic but not unequivocal differences between women and men investors on a number of key investor and investment characteristics. We also report indicative evidence that members of women-only networks do differ from women who join mixed networks. Drawing on these results, we develop a stereotype threat theory perspective on women’s angel investing which highlights the cues, consequences, outcomes and responses to stereotype threat. Specifically, we theorise that stereotype threat, influences women’s widely reported lower participation in the angel investment market compared with men. Additionally, stereotype threat theory helps explain both women’s overall active involvement in the angel investment market and their participation in women-only investor networks. We conclude that there is a case for women-only angel networks and training programmes to mitigate the performance and participation consequences of stereotype threat.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Small Business Journal
Early online date9 Jul 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 Jul 2020


  • angel investment
  • gender
  • stereotype threat
  • competition
  • performance
  • risk

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