Championing innovation and entrepreneurship

Associate Professor Yuli Suseno is passionate about giving entrepreneurs an opportunity to be heard, and for economies, societies and individuals to experience the very real impact they can make.

Yuli Suseno at NUSpace

Associate Professor Yuli Suseno’s research on innovation and entrepreneurship explores how organisations design and implement innovative strategies, business practices and models; and how entrepreneurs champion digital and social innovation to address global and local challenges.

“My research also explores the macro-, meso-, and micro-level challenges that women entrepreneurs face in the pursuit of developing and growing their businesses,” explains Yuli.

Yuli believes that innovation and entrepreneurship empower individuals and stimulate growth in businesses. She also believes they are both crucial to instigating change in society.

Her research on organisational studies have helped elucidate the pressing challenges that innovative processes, products and solutions can solve.

Women in business

The scope of challenges Yuli’s research attempts to address includes how organisations and entrepreneurs develop novel ideas through innovation and creativity. In identifying factors that inspire innovation, Yuli cites one of her recently published works.

“In my recent article published in the Australian Journal of Public Administration, we examined innovative work behaviour in the public sector and found that the task characteristics of our job, the social support we have and our proactive personality play a role in determining the extent of our innovative work behaviour.”

Yuli’s additional interest in the challenges female entrepreneurs face has inspired research that examines a range of personal and professional issues unique to women.

“In my current research, I am looking at the challenges and opportunities women entrepreneurs face in our society. I’ve explored aspects such as how women entrepreneurs manage their work-life balance, the stigma and fear of failure, competencies and skills as women entrepreneurs, and the impact of their businesses on the broader economic and societal scale."

So far, her findings have been informative and highlight a well-documented conflict many professional women recognise.

“Despite their successes, some of the women entrepreneurs struggle in managing their personal lives, and the constant pressure of meeting business targets and ensuring that they keep their staff employed.”

Though entrepreneurship is key to economic growth, Yuli has found a marked lack of understanding concerning the issues female entrepreneurs face—just one of many blind spots her effort is trying to shed light on.

"My research opens up discussions in areas such as the way women entrepreneurs are managing their businesses, how they are coping, how their businesses create an impact in society, and the implications of policy implementation to create effective ecosystems for entrepreneurship particularly for women entrepreneurs.”

“The topic is relevant to, and worth exploring in, other contexts including emerging markets around the development and progress of entrepreneurship and innovation.”

UN Sustainable Development Goals

A significant barrier to Yuli’s work with female entrepreneurs is the availability of raw data. Collecting relevant information takes a great deal of time.

“There is no way to overcome the time issue. Given that we wanted to capture women’s experiences and challenges in an in-depth manner, conducting interviews would be the most effective method to do this.

“We have done interviews with over 40 entrepreneurs and look forward to speaking to more in the near future.”

Yuli is convinced that promoting female entrepreneurs can have a positive impact on economies, societies and individual lives—it’s the kind of notable difference her research has the potential of making.

“My research on women’s entrepreneurship has implications in terms of identifying female role models to encourage entrepreneurship among women; understanding the challenges and opportunities faced by women entrepreneurs—they are able to share stories and insights from each other; and removing unconscious bias and facilitating conscious understanding of the ramifications of the work-home role conflict for women entrepreneurs.”

Yuli’s research also encompasses the UN Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG 5: Gender Equality, and SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth.

“Given that the majority of studies on entrepreneurship and institutions are masculine-oriented, this poses legitimacy and equality issues for women entrepreneurs.”

“As entrepreneurship increasingly becomes an effective means for female empowerment, the research has practical implications for our economy and society in terms of further understanding how the experience and behaviours of women entrepreneurs can influence and be impacted by institutional factors.”

Giving entrepreneurs a voice

Yuli’s expertise and field of interest is garnering new opportunities that could expand her reach and influence.

“I am currently exploring an opportunity to work together with the UN Global Compact Network Indonesia, a local network of the United Nations Global Compact, to help explore actions and collaborations for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals in Indonesia.”

It’s a prospect with potential to do a lot of good. Ultimately though, Yuli finds the greatest fulfilment in giving entrepreneurs a voice.

“What excites me most are opportunities to connect with entrepreneurs, to hear their stories, about the progress of their business and their challenges, and to witness their motivation and resilience.

“It is empowering to be able to provide a platform for entrepreneurs to share their insights on their success, strategies and challenges.”

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.