Documenting Essex‐Boy as a local gendered regime

Robert Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


As a social construct, entrepreneurship is portrayed as an unashamedly masculine endeavour. This forms the basis for much feminist research in entrepreneurship. Despite a sustained research effort in the field of gendered entrepreneurship research this polarised viewpoint remains under researched from the perspective of masculinity. Rather than perpetuate the polarity this short article aims to consider the concept of gendered entrepreneurial regimes as an explanatory variable.

Design/methodology/approachUsing documentary analysis techniques this article seeks to document the existence of a particular gendered local regime in the form of “Essex‐Boy culture”.

FindingsThe findings although tentative indicate that as a recognised gendered local regime Essex‐Boy identity manifests itself physically at a conceptual, gendered, geographic, community and cultural level. Semiotically it can be expressed as a legitimate business identity, a criminal identity, a celebrity status, a political identity, as parody, caricature and as metaphor. It can be expressed as an ideology, a doxa, class position, a culture or as an initiating dream. It also exists at a narrative level via memoires, biographies, jokes or scripted insult.

Research limitations/implicationsGiven that this is a preliminary study based on secondary documents there is clearly scope for other studies to be conducted into this interesting phenomenon.

Social implicationsThe study has implications for what can be legitimately studied under the rubric of gendered entrepreneurial research.

Originality/valueThis study is original in its exclusive use of documentary research/analysis to uncover gendered aspects of an under studied entrepreneurial regime.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-197
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Gender and Entrepreneurship
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • culture
  • masculinity
  • women
  • entrepreneurship
  • gender theory
  • social structure


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