Dr Isla Kapasi

Dr Isla Kapasi


I am a Lecturer of Enterprise and Entrepreneurship at the University of Leeds. My research takes a critical perspective on enterprise and entrepreneurship, and focusses on understanding why individuals pursue entrepreneurship, especially in challenging contexts or circumstances. I have previously undertaken research projects examining entrepreneurship in communities and with individuals experiencing low incomes, the practices and experiences of home-based businesses, and access to and use of special resources by microbusinesses.

My work has been published in international peer-reviewed academic journals, for which I am also a reviewer, and I have presented at several internationally recognised conferences. I have received research funding from BA Leverhulme, Society for the Advancement of Management Studies, and University of South-Eastern Norway amongst others. In addition, I have taught enterprise and entrepreneurship to undergraduates, postgraduates and MBAs across the UK and in Europe; I am also a certified Team Academy Coach and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

I have a background in self-employment, have run social enterprises, and worked within the public and private sector. Currently, I am co-Chair of the Practice & Impact special interest group with the Institute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ISBE); its purpose is to more widely integrate the work of academics with policy and practice in the field of enterprise and entrepreneurship. Finally, I am also involved with several charitable, social enterprise and public sector organisations, and currently mentor high growth firms operating across Scotland.

Research interests

My current research interests include critical entrepreneurship studies, motivations for entrepreneurship, poverty and home-based business. 


  • PhD in Management
  • MRes in Research Methods
  • MSc in Business Management with Entrepreneurship
  • BA (Hons) Arts

Professional memberships

  • Academy of Management
  • European Group of Organization Studies
  • Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship

Student education

In session 2020-21 I am module leader/teaching on:

LUBS5963M Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Creation (Semester 1)

LUBS5526M Global Perspectives on Enterprise (Semester 2)

LUBS5531M Critical Entrepreneurship Studies (Semester 2)

LUBS5954M Critically Assessing Research (Semester 2)

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Studies