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Entrepreneurial career paths: occupational context and the propensity to become self-employed

Author

Listed:
  • Alina Sorgner

    () (Friedrich Schiller University Jena
    Kiel Institute for the World Economy)

  • Michael Fritsch

    () (Friedrich Schiller University Jena)

Abstract

Abstract We investigate the relationship between characteristics of an occupation-specific environment and the decision of employees to start an own business. A relatively high occupation-specific unemployment risk and high earnings risk are conducive to opt for self-employment. Also, occupations that are characterized by high self-employment rates foster entrepreneurial choice among their employees. The results suggest that career choices of future entrepreneurs are driven by different motivations than those of non-entrepreneurs. In particular, the expectation of a pronounced financial gain is critical for future entrepreneurs when they make their initial occupational choices in paid employment and it is also relevant for a self-employment choice. We find that when future entrepreneurs enter the labor market, they are more likely to choose occupations that require a relatively high variety of skills.

Suggested Citation

  • Alina Sorgner & Michael Fritsch, 2018. "Entrepreneurial career paths: occupational context and the propensity to become self-employed," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 51(1), pages 129-152, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:51:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11187-017-9917-z
    DOI: 10.1007/s11187-017-9917-z
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Entrepreneurial choice; Occupation-specific determinants of entrepreneurship; Employment risk; Earnings risk; Skill variety;

    JEL classification:

    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • D01 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles

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