Partnerships for Regional Development and the Question of Gender Equality
This chapter argues that the consequences of the development policy are gender discriminatory. It presents examples both from women who failed in their attempt to start their own business and from business advisors whose aims are to support women and men who want to start their own business. At the national government level women and gender equality are acknowledged in circumstances where policy is outlined for regional development, but regional partnerships within the regional development field are troublesome. By the beginning of the 1990s a new regional development policy had been outlined. One of the new rural regions that were identified as being in need of structural change was the Objective 5b area of Southeast of Sweden. When Sweden applied for membership in the European Union, structural regional development funds helped speed up the reorientation of policy towards a regional development policy that encouraged increased competition between Swedish regions.