Entrepreneurial strategies as a response to discrimination: Experience of Ukrainian women in Poland from the intersectional perspective

  • Katarzyna Andrejuk
Keywords: labour market integration, immigrant entrepreneurship, Ukrainians in Poland


The article aims to examine the experience of female immigrant entrepreneurs from Ukraine who reside in Poland. Ukrainians constitute the biggest immigrant minority in the country and thus they are a symbol of the emergent Polish multiculturalism. However, being an immigrant and a woman may lead to the accumulation of obstacles in the process of integration with the host society. The barriers have various origins: some of them emerge in the host country, while others result from gender stereotypes in the sending communities. The intersectional perspective is used in order to examine a variety of marginalisation practices, which may appear in different dimensions of social life: activity on the labour market, family life, stereotypes and attitudes of the receiving society. The outcomes of the intersecting statuses may be even more discriminating than the results of each of these social statuses separately. The context of the life stage is also essential in examining social barriers experienced by the group under study: young mothers, older uneducated women and foreigners in the early phases of being abroad are under particularly strong threat of discrimination. The analysis reveals that female migrants actively strategize to counteract marginalisation, most notably by self-employment and setting up family firms.