Analyzing 1055 female- and 2207 male-owned businesses in Germany, we find that the former underperform the latter in terms of employment growth and firm innovativeness. Controlling for endogeneity, i.e. feedback effects between employment growth and innovation, we show that the lower employment growth in womenowned businesses is mainly due to women’s lower commitment to product and process innovations, a phenomenon which is referred to as
“female-male innovation gap”
in this study. The female-male innovation gap goes apparently back to
occupational sex segregation
, with women occupying occupations and choosing fields of study or apprenticeship training which are less technical or technology-oriented and thus less likely to provide them with important resources (e.g. technical know-how) and favorable conditions needed for the development and implementation of product and process innovations.