According to Salwa Katkhuda of the Amman-based Oasis 500 accelerator, a program aimed at developing digital start-ups in Jordan, while 25% of applications to its program come from women, 40% of those accepted are female.
By contrast, a recent report called the Startup Genome, comparing start-ups around the world, found that while New York City has almost double the female founders of Silicon Valley and London, they still comprised just 20% of start-ups.
May Habib, founder of Dubai-based Arabic translation service Qordoba.com, which uses a lot of freelance female workers, said the Internet has transformed women's opportunities. "More flexible work options, freelance, home-based work, low capital requirements; you can see why starting a company on a small scale is a much more viable thing for women to do than get a corporate job."
The ability to work from home is very significant. "Working from home is a big thing," says Ms. Katkhuda. "In Jordan, specifically, the main reason for women not entering the work force is the lack of a proper transit system. We don't have an affordable transit system that can take women from remote areas to the city." (Excerpt from WSJ)