Academic Article 2

Секція: Інновації в бізнес-освіті

  1. Semeniuk, PhD in Economics,

Vinnytsia Institute of Trade and Economics SUTE

Vinnytsia Ukraine

  1. Makhnachova, PhD in Economics, Аssociate Рrofessor

Vinnytsia Institute of Trade and Economics SUTE

Vinnytsia Ukraine


According to the International Labor Organization, almost 5 million Ukrainians have lost their jobs since the beginning of the war. Of this number, 1.2 million are refugees who left for neighboring countries, and 3.6 million are unemployed living in Ukraine. At the same time, many qualified specialists are looking for work [1]. Thus, it is quite possible to speak about the most acute crisis in the labor market of Ukraine over the past decade, which in turn creates an additional burden on the labor market of neighboring EU countries.

No less global is the problem of unemployment among IDP women and women who have become immigrants in the countries of the European Union. In addition, in Ukraine for the nine months of 2022, the highest rate of registered unemployed was recorded among women aged 35-45 years [2]. At this age, women are at the peak of their economic activity, which only exacerbates the above problem.

Therefore, it is important to solve the problem of integrating IDP women and immigrant women into the labor market through entrepreneurship. After all, state institutions both in Ukraine and EU actively provide grant and consulting support for doing business.

In this context, it is also important to unite the efforts of the Ukrainian and European communities to solve the unemployment problem. The WeCan project is an example of such cooperation. WeCan is an Erasmus+ project that aims to facilitate the integration of immigrant women both socially and in the labor market through entrepreneurship. The project lasted for three years and finished in 2022. The leading organization and project coordinator is Folkuniversitetet (Sweden). There are also 5 partner organizations from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Cyprus, Greece and Ukraine [3]. 

The final intellectual output of the project implementation (IO3) is the development of Guidance for professionals working with low skilled women with entrepreneurial ideas. Through the research conducted at the primary stages of the project and the pilot implementation of the WeCan training course, project partners have approached the Guidance in a way that would serve the real needs of the migrant women and IDP women. The final Guidance for professionals working with low skilled women, provides suggestions on how to enrich current integration programs for low skilled women with training material, for the development of the entrepreneurial competence. For those women having their own entrepreneurial ideas it offers guidelines on how to develop these ideas one step further.

The Guidance takes the role of a multitool that can be used in various programs/training courses/consultation sessions, by professionals who work with migrant/IDP women either low-skilled or with certain entrepreneurial ideas. The core idea is that professionals working with low-skilled women or women with entrepreneurial ideas, use the creation of an event as a simulation in order to apply some of the entrepreneurial skills.

When developing the Guidance, much attention was paid to the formation of women's entrepreneurial competence. Entrepreneurship (which involves a sense of initiative) is one of the discerned key competences prioritised by the European Commission considers as essential for all citizens. The European Commission’s definition for Entrepreneurship (or “sense of initiative”) is: the capacity to act upon opportunities and ideas, and to transform them into values for others. It is founded upon creativity, critical thinking and problem solving, taking initiative and perseverance and the ability to work collaboratively in order to plan and manage projects that are of cultural, social or commercial value.

By developing the entrepreneurial competence, one is addressing the basic competences and attitudes which migrant/IDP women in host countries/ communities are often lacking due to the barriers they face during the integration process: being self-managing, taking initiative and being able to take control of their own lives and careers (fig. 1).

Figure 1. Competence areas related to entrepreneurial competence [4]

Thus, the war became a challenge for the labor market in Ukraine and the European Union, causing an increase in unemployment among women. To overcome the problem, it is important to focus on developing an entrepreneurial attitude as a capacity to act upon opportunities and ideas and transform them into values for others. This was one of the main tasks for the implementation of the WeCan project and the development of Guidance for professionals working with low-skilled women with entrepreneurial ideas.


  1. Nearly 5 million jobs have been lost in Ukraine since the start of the Russian aggression, says ILO. International Labour Organization. URL: ilo/newsroom/news/WCMS_844625/lang--en/index.htm.
  2. The situation on the labor market and the activities of the State Employment Service in January-August 2022. Official website of the State Employment Service. URL:
  3. The official website of the WeCan project. URL:
  4. The European Entrepreneurship Competence Framework (EntreComp). URL: