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The Role and Determinants of Entrepreneurial Intention at University Level: Theoretical Issues and New Empirical Evidence from Italy


  • Francesco Scafarto

    (Università degli Studi di Macerata)

  • Simona Balzano

    (Università degli Studi di Cassino e del Lazio Meridionale)


The aim of the paper is to investigate the entrepreneurial intentions of 252 Italian business graduate students from University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy. Based on the Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behaviour (TBP), we used the Entrepreneurial Intention Questionnaire (EIQ) to collect the data which were analysed through Structural Equation Modelling (SEM), by using PLS (Partial Least Squares) approach. Consistently with previous studies the main results suggest that entrepreneurial intentions are directly influenced by personal attitudes and perceived behavioural control, while the effect produced by subjective norms is mediated. Differences in working experiences and the presence of a family business also contribute to explain student's propensity toward entrepreneurship. Furthermore, either gender diversity or the positive valuation about the role of university education seem to contribute significantly to the genesis of entrepreneurial intentions. Based on these results, we propose some considerations about the need to intensify entrepreneurial education efforts at Tor Vergata University. Finally, the paper constitutes a seminal study about entrepreneurial intentions of Italian university students, adding new evidence to a consolidated scientific conversation from a different university context.

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  • Francesco Scafarto & Simona Balzano, 2012. "The Role and Determinants of Entrepreneurial Intention at University Level: Theoretical Issues and New Empirical Evidence from Italy," DSI Essays Series, DSI - Dipartimento di Studi sull'Impresa, vol. 25.
  • Handle: RePEc:tov:dsiess:v:25:y:2012

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item


    Entrepreneurial Intentions; Entrepreneurship Education; Italy; Structural Equation Modelling;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • M13 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - New Firms; Startups
    • M21 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Economics - - - Business Economics


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