IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/soceco/v47y2013icp55-72.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The disposition to become an entrepreneur and the jacks-of-all-trades in social and human capital

Author

Listed:
  • Backes-Gellner, Uschi
  • Moog, Petra

Abstract

This paper studies how an individual's composition of human and social capital affects his or her disposition to become an entrepreneur. Our theoretical analysis is an extension of Lazear's (2005) jack-of-all-trades theory in combination with the idea of bricolage of experiences and their effectuation in the disposition to become an entrepreneur. Our primary conclusion is that it is not individuals with a higher level of human or social capital but rather individuals with a more balanced and combined portfolio of human capital, social capital and experiences that are more disposed than others to become entrepreneurs. We use survey data from a sample of more than 2000 German students to test this hypothesis and find that the jacks-of-all-trades, i.e., individuals who are more balancing and combining different skills rather than specializing in a few, are more likely to become entrepreneurs. On the other hand, the masters-of-one, i.e., the specialists, are better off being employees and rightly prefer to do so.

Suggested Citation

  • Backes-Gellner, Uschi & Moog, Petra, 2013. "The disposition to become an entrepreneur and the jacks-of-all-trades in social and human capital," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 55-72.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:47:y:2013:i:c:p:55-72
    DOI: 10.1016/j.socec.2013.08.008
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1053535713001236
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1016/j.socec.2013.08.008?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Marco Cagetti & Mariacristina De Nardi, 2006. "Entrepreneurship, Frictions, and Wealth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(5), pages 835-870, October.
    2. Blanchflower, David G., 2000. "Self-employment in OECD countries," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 471-505, September.
    3. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas & Joulfaian, David & Rosen, Harvey S, 1994. "Sticking It Out: Entrepreneurial Survival and Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(1), pages 53-75, February.
    4. Blanchflower, D. & Oswald, A., 1990. "What Makes A Young Entrepreneur?," Papers 373, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
    5. Joop Hartog & Mirjam Van Praag & Justin Van Der Sluis, 2010. "If You Are So Smart, Why Aren't You an Entrepreneur? Returns to Cognitive and Social Ability: Entrepreneurs Versus Employees," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(4), pages 947-989, December.
    6. Evans, David S & Jovanovic, Boyan, 1989. "An Estimated Model of Entrepreneurial Choice under Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 808-827, August.
    7. Blanchflower, David G & Oswald, Andrew J, 1998. "What Makes an Entrepreneur?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(1), pages 26-60, January.
    8. John F. Helliwell & Robert D. Putnam, 2007. "Education and Social Capital," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 33(1), pages 1-19, Winter.
    9. Arent Greve & Janet W. Salaff, 2003. "Social Networks and Entrepreneurship," Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, , vol. 28(1), pages 1-22, January.
    10. Edward P. Lazear, 2004. "Balanced Skills and Entrepreneurship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 208-211, May.
    11. Wagner, Joachim, 2004. "Are Young and Small Firms Hothouses for Nascent Entrepreneurs? Evidence from German Micro Data," IZA Discussion Papers 989, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    12. Daiji Kawaguchi, 2002. "Compensating Wage Differentials among Self-Employed Workers:Evidence from Job Satisfaction Scores," ISER Discussion Paper 0568, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    13. Edward L. Glaeser & David Laibson & Bruce Sacerdote, 2002. "An Economic Approach to Social Capital," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 437-458, November.
    14. Daniel W. Elfenbein & Barton H. Hamilton & Todd R. Zenger, 2010. "The Small Firm Effect and the Entrepreneurial Spawning of Scientists and Engineers," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 56(4), pages 659-681, April.
    15. Silva, Olmo, 2007. "The Jack-of-All-Trades entrepreneur: Innate talent or acquired skill?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 118-123, November.
    16. David G. Blanchflower, 2004. "Self-Employment: More may not be better," NBER Working Papers 10286, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Douglas Holtz-Eakin & David Joulfaian & Harvey S. Rosen, 1994. "Entrepreneurial Decisions and Liquidity Constraints," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(2), pages 334-347, Summer.
    18. J. Wagner, 2003. "Testing Lazear's jack-of-all-trades view of entrepreneurship with German micro data," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(11), pages 687-689.
    19. Davidsson, Per & Honig, Benson, 2003. "The role of social and human capital among nascent entrepreneurs," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 301-331, May.
    20. Joachim Wagner, 2007. "What a Difference a Y makes-Female and Male Nascent Entrepreneurs in Germany," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 1-21, January.
    21. Nicolaou, Nicos & Birley, Sue, 2003. "Academic networks in a trichotomous categorisation of university spinouts," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 333-359, May.
    22. Haase Svendsen, Gunnar Lind & Kjeldsen, Chris & Noe, Egon, 2010. "How do private entrepreneurs transform local social capital into economic capital? Four case studies from rural Denmark," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 631-644, December.
    23. Dunn, Thomas & Holtz-Eakin, Douglas, 2000. "Financial Capital, Human Capital, and the Transition to Self-Employment: Evidence from Intergenerational Links," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 282-305, April.
    24. Cromie, Stan & Birley, Sue, 1992. "Networking by female business owners in Northern Ireland," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 237-251, May.
    25. Roy Thurik, 2003. "Entrepreneurship and Unemployment in the UK," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 50(3), pages 264-290, August.
    26. Michael Lubatkin & John Florin & William S. Schulze, 2003. "A social capital model of high growth ventures," Post-Print hal-02311715, HAL.
    27. KruegerJR, Norris F. & Reilly, Michael D. & Carsrud, Alan L., 2000. "Competing models of entrepreneurial intentions," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 15(5-6), pages 411-432.
    28. Candida G. Brush, 1992. "Research on Women Business Owners: Past Trends, a New Perspective and Future Directions," Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, , vol. 16(4), pages 5-30, July.
    29. Hoang, Ha & Antoncic, Bostjan, 2003. "Network-based research in entrepreneurship: A critical review," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 165-187, March.
    30. Allen, W. David, 2000. "Social networks and self-employment," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 29(5), pages 487-501.
    31. Parker, Simon C, 2009. "Why do small firms produce the entrepreneurs?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 484-494, June.
    32. Anderson, Alistair R. & Miller, Claire J., 2003. ""Class matters": human and social capital in the entrepreneurial process," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 17-36, March.
    33. Michael Lubatkin & John Florin & William S. Schulze, 2003. "A social capital model of high growth ventures," Post-Print hal-02276699, HAL.
    34. William J. Baumol, 2004. "Education for Innovation: Entrepreneurial Breakthroughs vs. Corporate Incremental Improvements," NBER Working Papers 10578, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    35. Petra Moog & Uschi Backes-Gellner, 2009. "Social Capital and the Willingness to Become Self-Employed," International Studies of Management & Organization, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(2), pages 33-64, January.
    36. Parker,Simon C., 2006. "The Economics of Self-Employment and Entrepreneurship," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521030632, November.
    37. Oberschachtsiek, Dirk, 2009. "What makes a 'jack-of-all-trades'?," IAB-Discussion Paper 200910, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    38. BodenJR., Richard J. & Nucci, Alfred R., 2000. "On the survival prospects of men's and women's new business ventures," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 347-362, July.
    39. Barton H. Hamilton, 2000. "Does Entrepreneurship Pay? An Empirical Analysis of the Returns to Self-Employment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(3), pages 604-631, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Silke Tegtmeier & Agnieszka Kurczewska & Jantje Halberstadt, 2016. "Are women graduates jacquelines-of-all-trades? Challenging Lazear’s view on entrepreneurship," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 47(1), pages 77-94, June.
    2. Petra Moog & Arndt Werner & Stefan Houweling & Uschi Backes-Gellner, 2015. "The impact of skills, working time allocation and peer effects on the entrepreneurial intentions of scientists," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 493-511, June.
    3. Judit Albiol-Sánchez & Luis Diaz-Serrano & Mercedes Teruel, 2021. "The Transition to Self-Employment and Perceived Skill-Mismatches: Panel Data Evidence from Eleven EU Countries," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 153(3), pages 957-977, February.
    4. Gutierrez-Lythgoe, Antonio, 2023. "Redes y autoempleo: Evidencia con datos de Facebook [Networks and self-employment: Evidence from Facebook data]," MPRA Paper 116656, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Damian Daniela & Capatina Alexandru, 2019. "Seeking freelancers’ motivations to adopt an entrepreneurial career – a storytelling approach," Proceedings of the International Conference on Business Excellence, Sciendo, vol. 13(1), pages 206-215, May.
    6. Conrad Wiedeler & Nadine Kammerlander, 2021. "Learning the ropes of entrepreneurship: understanding internal corporate venturing for family firms from an entrepreneurial learning perspective," Review of Managerial Science, Springer, vol. 15(3), pages 669-703, April.
    7. Krieger, Alexander & Block, Joern & Stuetzer, Michael, 2018. "Skill variety in entrepreneurship: A literature review and research directions," MPRA Paper 88389, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Arthur Félix W. Sawadogo, 2022. "Quel effet du parcours scolaire sur les aspirations des jeunes à une carrière entrepreneuriale ?," Post-Print halshs-04236992, HAL.
    9. Kristian Nielsen, 2015. "Human capital and new venture performance: the industry choice and performance of academic entrepreneurs," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 453-474, June.
    10. Alexander Krieger & Michael Stuetzer & Martin Obschonka & Katariina Salmela-Aro, 2022. "The growth of entrepreneurial human capital: origins and development of skill variety," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 59(2), pages 645-664, August.
    11. Schlepphorst, Susanne & Moog, Petra, 2014. "Left in the dark: Family successors’ requirement profiles in the family business succession process," Journal of Family Business Strategy, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 358-371.
    12. Popescu Alexandrina Mihaela & Cuc Madalina, 2021. "Critical Thinking In The Entrepreneurial Ecosystem At University Level," Annals - Economy Series, Constantin Brancusi University, Faculty of Economics, vol. 2, pages 87-96, April.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Werner, Arndt & Moog, Petra, 2009. "Why do Employees Leave Their Jobs for Self-Employment? – The Impact of Entrepreneurial Working Conditions in Small Firms," MPRA Paper 18826, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Junfu Zhang & Zhong Zhao, 2015. "Social-family network and self-employment: evidence from temporary rural–urban migrants in China," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-21, December.
    3. Uschi Backes-Gellner & Petra Moog, 2007. "Who chooses to become an entrepreneur? The Jacks-of-all-Trades in Social and Human Capital," Working Papers 0076, University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU).
    4. Nadia Simoes & Nuno Crespo & Sandrina B. Moreira, 2016. "Individual Determinants Of Self-Employment Entry: What Do We Really Know?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(4), pages 783-806, September.
    5. Sascha G. Walter & Achim Walter, 2009. "Personenbezogene Determinanten von Unternehmensgründungen: Stand der Forschung und Perspektiven des Fortschritts," Schmalenbach Journal of Business Research, Springer, vol. 61(1), pages 57-89, February.
    6. David Blanchflower, 2009. "Minority self-employment in the United States and the impact of affirmative action programs," Annals of Finance, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 361-396, June.
    7. Erik Monsen & Prashanth Mahagaonkar & Christian Dienes, 2012. "Entrepreneurship in India: the question of occupational transition," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 39(2), pages 359-382, September.
    8. Naijia Guo & Charles Ka Yui Leung, 2021. "Do elite colleges matter? The impact on entrepreneurship decisions and career dynamics," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 12(4), pages 1347-1397, November.
    9. Robert W. Fairlie & Alicia M. Robb, 2008. "Race and Entrepreneurial Success: Black-, Asian-, and White-Owned Businesses in the United States," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026206281x, December.
    10. Ari Hyytinen & Pekka Ilmakunnas, 2005. "Geneses of labour market turnover: Job search and entrepreneurial aspirations on-the-job," Labor and Demography 0501003, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Werner, Arndt, 2011. "Abbruch und Aufschub von Gründungsvorhaben: Eine empirische Analyse mit den Daten des Gründerpanels des IfM Bonn," IfM-Materialien 209, Institut für Mittelstandsforschung (IfM) Bonn.
    12. Hyytinen, Ari & Ilmakunnas, Pekka, 2004. "Entrepreneurial Aspirations," Discussion Papers 890, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    13. Ross Levine & Yona Rubinstein, 2018. "Selection into Entrepreneurship and Self-Employment," NBER Working Papers 25350, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Laffineur, Catherine & Dubard Barbosa, Saulo & Fayolle, Alain & Montmartin, Benjamin, 2020. "The unshackled entrepreneur: Occupational determinants of entrepreneurial effort," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 35(5).
    15. Magnus Lofstrom, 2013. "Does self-employment increase the economic well-being of low-skilled workers?," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 40(4), pages 933-952, May.
    16. Robert W. Fairlie & Alicia M. Robb, 2007. "Why Are Black-Owned Businesses Less Successful than White-Owned Businesses? The Role of Families, Inheritances, and Business Human Capital," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(2), pages 289-323.
    17. Dongxu Wu & Zhongmin Wu, 2015. "Intergenerational links, gender differences, and determinants of self-employment," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, vol. 42(3), pages 400-414, August.
    18. Enrico Santarelli & Marco Vivarelli, 2007. "Entrepreneurship and the process of firms’ entry, survival and growth," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press and the Associazione ICC, vol. 16(3), pages 455-488, June.
    19. Felipe Balmaceda, 2018. "Entrepreneurship: skills and financing," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 50(4), pages 871-886, April.
    20. Matthias Benz, "undated". "Entrepreneurship as a non-profit-seeking activity," IEW - Working Papers 243, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Entrepreneurship; Jack-of-all-trades theory; Social capital;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • M5 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics
    • J4 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:47:y:2013:i:c:p:55-72. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Catherine Liu (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620175 .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.