UNI business ethics faculty part of African-American Women Entrepreneurs project

February 27, 2005

Laquita Blockson, UNI assistant professor of management, policy and ethics, (319) 273-2020
Donna Wood, David W. Wilson Chair in Business Ethics at UNI, (319) 273-2196
Vicki Grimes, University Marketing & Public Relations, (319) 273-6728

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Laquita Blockson, UNI assistant professor of management, policy and ethics, has received a grant to conduct a groundbreaking new study on African-American women entrepreneurs. The study is a joint effort with Sammie Robinson of Illinois Wesleyan University and Jeffrey Robinson of New York University. Centered at NYU, and funded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the project is titled 'Doing It Our Way: Economic and Sociological Influences on the Success of African-American Entrepreneurs.' The team will present its initial findings at the Simmons School of Management's Leading Women Entrepreneur Series March 21.

According to Blockson, the goal of the study is to discover the economic and sociological factors that account for the viability, growth and sustainability of African-American women entrepreneurs. The team has already begun research and will present an initial paper on its findings at the Eastern Academy of Management International Meeting June 26-30, in Cape Town, South Africa.

Research has shown that women-owned businesses are the fastest growing segment of new businesses in the United States. Black women have a larger percentage of black-owned businesses than white women do of white-owned businesses, according to Blockson, though she said there is no research to explain that fact.

'Blockson's study may provide valuable findings in an area that influences researchers, professors, policy makers, the government and future entrepreneurs,' said Donna Wood, David W. Wilson Chair in Business Ethics at UNI. 'Blockson's research is important to the Cedar Falls/Waterloo community and the discussion of ethics and race in the business world, according to Wood. She is particularly interested in learning what influence African-American women-led ventures have on the social fabric of the African-American community.'

The College of Business Administration and the College of Humanities & Fine Arts jointly share the David W. Wilson Chair in Business Ethics. The chair is dedicated to educating students and the community about ethical practices, fostering discussion and debate about ethical practices, and developing theory in business ethics. Blockson is a member of the Wilson Chair in Business Ethics faculty committee.

For more information, contact Blockson at (319) 273-2020 or laquita.blockson@uni.edu.