IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/sbusec/v32y2009i2p153-167.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Risk attitudes of nascent entrepreneurs–new evidence from an experimentally validated survey

Author

Listed:
  • Marco Caliendo

    ()

  • Frank Fossen

    ()

  • Alexander Kritikos

    ()

Abstract

The influence of risk aversion on the decision to become self-employed is a much discussed topic in the entrepreneurial literature. Conventional wisdom asserts that the role model of an entrepreneur requires to make risky decisions in uncertain environments and hence that more risk-averse individuals are less likely to become an entrepreneur. Empirical tests of this assumption are scarce however, mainly because reliable measures for risk-aversion are not available. We base our analysis on the most recent waves of the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) which allow us to use experimentally-validated measures of risk attitudes. Most importantly and in contrast to previous research, we are able to examine whether the decision of starting a business is influenced by objectively measurable risk attitudes at the time when this decision is made. Our results show that in general individuals with lower risk aversion are more likely to become self-employed. Sensitivity analysis reveals, however, that this is true only for people coming out of regular employment, whereas for individuals coming out of unemployment or inactivity risk attitudes do not seem to play a role in the decision process.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Caliendo & Frank Fossen & Alexander Kritikos, 2009. "Risk attitudes of nascent entrepreneurs–new evidence from an experimentally validated survey," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 153-167, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:32:y:2009:i:2:p:153-167
    DOI: 10.1007/s11187-007-9078-6
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11187-007-9078-6
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.
    ---><---

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

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Robert B. Barsky & Miles S. Kimball & F. Thomas Juster & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1995. "Preference Parameters and Behavioral Heterogeneity: An Experimental Approach in the Health and Retirement Survey," NBER Working Papers 5213, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Wagner Joachim, 2003. "The Impact of Personal Characteristics and the Regional Milieu on the Transition from Unemployment to Self-employment: Empirical Evidence for Germany / Zur Bedeutung von individuellen Charakteristika ," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 223(2), pages 204-222, April.
    3. 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.
    4. Thomas Dohmen & Armin Falk & David Huffman & Uwe Sunde & Juergen Schupp & Gert Wagner, 2005. "Individual Risk Attitudes: New Evidence from a Large, Representative, Experimentally-Validated Survey," Working Papers 2096, The Field Experiments Website.
    5. Koellinger, Philipp & Minniti, Maria & Schade, Christian, 2007. ""I think I can, I think I can": Overconfidence and entrepreneurial behavior," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 502-527, August.
    6. 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.
    7. Cramer, J. S. & Hartog, J. & Jonker, N. & Van Praag, C. M., 2002. "Low risk aversion encourages the choice for entrepreneurship: an empirical test of a truism," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 29-36, May.
    8. Bernard F. Lentz & David N. Laband, 1990. "Entrepreneurial Success and Occupational Inheritance among Proprietors," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 23(3), pages 563-579, August.
    9. Robert B. Barsky & F. Thomas Juster & Miles S. Kimball & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1997. "Preference Parameters and Behavioral Heterogeneity: An Experimental Approach in the Health and Retirement Study," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 537-579.
    10. Schiller, Bradley R & Crewson, Philip E, 1997. "Entrepreneurial Origins: A Longitudinal Inquiry," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(3), pages 523-531, July.
    11. Pia Arenius & Maria Minniti, 2005. "Perceptual Variables and Nascent Entrepreneurship," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 233-247, February.
    12. StewartJr., Wayne H. & Watson, Warren E. & Carland, Joann C. & Carland, James W., 1999. "A proclivity for entrepreneurship: A comparison of entrepreneurs, small business owners, and corporate managers," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 189-214, March.
    13. Gert G. Wagner & Joachim R. Frick & Jürgen Schupp, 2007. "The German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) – Scope, Evolution and Enhancements," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 127(1), pages 139-169.
    14. Rees, Hedley & Shah, Anup, 1986. "An Empirical Analysis of Self-employment in the U.K," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 1(1), pages 95-108, January.
    15. Rachel Croson & Uri Gneezy, 2009. "Gender Differences in Preferences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(2), pages 448-474, June.
    16. C. M. Van Praag & J. S. Cramer, 2001. "The Roots of Entrepreneurship and Labour Demand: Individual Ability and Low Risk Aversion," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 68(269), pages 45-62, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    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. Caliendo, Marco & Fossen, Frank & Kritikos, Alexander, 2010. "The impact of risk attitudes on entrepreneurial survival," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 45-63, October.
    2. Cho, In Soo, 2011. "Do Gender Differences in Risk Preferences Explain Gender Differences in Labor Supply, Earnings or Occupational Choice?," Staff General Research Papers Archive 34651, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    3. Skriabikova, Olga J. & Dohmen, Thomas & Kriechel, Ben, 2014. "New evidence on the relationship between risk attitudes and self-employment," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 176-184.
    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. Peter van der Zwan & Ingrid Verheul & Roy Thurik & Isabel Grilo, 2009. "Entrepreneurial Progress: Climbing the Entrepreneurial Ladder in Europe and the US," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 09-070/3, Tinbergen Institute, revised 17 Mar 2010.
    6. Kamhon Kan & Wei-Der Tsai, 2006. "Entrepreneurship and Risk Aversion," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 26(5), pages 465-474, June.
    7. Sarah Brown & Michael Dietrich & Aurora Ortiz & Karl Taylor, 2007. "Self-Employment and Risk Preference," Working Papers 2007008, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.
    8. Traikova, Diana, 2013. "Determinants of non-farm entrepreneurial intentions in a transitional context: Evidence from rural Bulgaria," Studies on the Agricultural and Food Sector in Transition Economies, Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO), volume 72, number 72, December.
    9. Sarah Brown & Lisa Farrell & Mark N. Harris & John G. Sessions, 2006. "Risk preference and employment contract type," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 169(4), pages 849-863, October.
    10. Catia Batista & Janis Umblijs, 2014. "Migration, risk attitudes, and entrepreneurship: evidence from a representative immigrant survey," IZA Journal of Migration and Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 3(1), pages 1-25, December.
    11. Frank M. Fossen, 2012. "Risk Attitudes and Private Business Equity," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1209, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    12. Cho, In Soo & Orazem, Peter, 2011. "Risk Aversion or Risk Management?: How Measures of Risk Aversion Affect Firm Entry and Firm Survival," Staff General Research Papers Archive 34162, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    13. Michael Fritsch & Alina Rusakova, 2010. "Personality Traits, Self-Employment, and Professions," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 343, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    14. Fairlie, Robert W. & Holleran, William, 2012. "Entrepreneurship training, risk aversion and other personality traits: Evidence from a random experiment," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 366-378.
    15. Ozkan Eren & Ozan Sula, 2012. "The Effect of Ability on Young Men's Self-Employment Decision: Evidence from the NELS," Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(4), pages 916-935, October.
    16. Rachel G. Childers, 2011. "Being One'S Own Boss: How Does Risk Fit In?," The American Economist, Sage Publications, vol. 56(1), pages 48-58, May.
    17. Marco Caliendo & Frank M. Fossen & Alexander Kritikos & Miriam Wetter, 2015. "The Gender Gap in Entrepreneurship: Not just a Matter of Personality," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 61(1), pages 202-238.
    18. Bonin, Holger & Dohmen, Thomas & Falk, Armin & Huffman, David & Sunde, Uwe, 2007. "Cross-sectional earnings risk and occupational sorting: The role of risk attitudes," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(6), pages 926-937, December.
    19. Laszlo Goerke & Markus Pannenberg, 2012. "Risk Aversion and Trade-Union Membership," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 114(2), pages 275-295, June.
    20. Wölfel, Oliver & Heineck, Guido, 2012. "Parental risk attitudes and children's secondary school track choice," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 727-743.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Entrepreneurship; Risk attitudes; Self-employment; D81; J23; L26; M13;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • M13 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - New Firms; Startups

    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:kap:sbusec:v:32:y:2009:i:2:p:153-167. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    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 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.

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.