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Opportunity recognition and the tendency to be an entrepreneur: A bivariate genetics perspective


  • Nicolaou, Nicos
  • Shane, Scott
  • Cherkas, Lynn
  • Spector, Tim D.


We applied quantitative genetics techniques to a sample of 851 pairs of monozygotic and 855 pairs of dizygotic female twins to examine the influence of genetic factors on the variation across people in opportunity recognition. We also examined the extent to which the same genetic factors contribute to both opportunity recognition and the tendency to be an entrepreneur. We found substantial heritability for opportunity recognition (0.45), with no influence of the shared environment. Moreover, we found that 53% of the phenotypic correlation between opportunity recognition and the tendency to be an entrepreneur had a common genetic aetiology.

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  • Nicolaou, Nicos & Shane, Scott & Cherkas, Lynn & Spector, Tim D., 2009. "Opportunity recognition and the tendency to be an entrepreneur: A bivariate genetics perspective," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 108-117, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:110:y:2009:i:2:p:108-117

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Shane, Scott & Nicolaou, Nicos, 2015. "Creative personality, opportunity recognition and the tendency to start businesses: A study of their genetic predispositions," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 407-419.
    2. Clarysse, Bart & Tartari, Valentina & Salter, Ammon, 2011. "The impact of entrepreneurial capacity, experience and organizational support on academic entrepreneurship," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(8), pages 1084-1093, October.
    3. Gupta, Vishal K. & Goktan, A. Banu & Gunay, Gonca, 2014. "Gender differences in evaluation of new business opportunity: A stereotype threat perspective," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 273-288.


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