The United States again ranks as the best place for female entrepreneurship in the second annual Gender-Global Entrepreneurship and Developmental Index (GEDI), commissioned by Dell. Australia had the second-highest index score; Sweden ranked third. Bangladesh and Pakistan ranked lowest of the 30 nations surveyed.

While praising some countries’ efforts to nurture women entrepreneurs, the report says 75% of the nations examined are not meeting the most fundamental conditions required for female business-builders to prosper, including access to equal legal rights and education and acceptance of women’s social and economic empowerment.

Dell says the GEDI is intended “to be a tool to guide leaders, policymakers and law-makers in identifying country-wide strengths and weaknesses and developing strategies to create more favorable conditions in their countries to enable businesses founded by women to thrive.” It does so by “analyzing entrepreneurial ecosystems, business environments and individual aspirations across 30 developed and developing economies spanning multiple regions, providing a systematic approach that allows cross-country comparison, benchmarking, and identifies data gaps.”

Access to capital remains one of the most important factors in entrepreneurship development, then GEDI reports. In 14 of the 30 countries surveyed, less than 50% of the female population have bank accounts. Also critical is what GEDI calls “occupation crowding,” the cultural identification of “men’s” and “women’s” jobs.

Dell also commissioned an e-book, “Forget the Glass Ceiling: Build Your Business Without One,” that addresses how women entrepreneurs can overcome obstacles and seize opportunities. This e-book—and the complete GEDI report—can be downloaded at Dell.com/women.

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