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Ambitious entrepreneurship, high-growth firms and macroeconomic growth


  • André van Stel
  • Roy Thurik
  • F. Stam
  • Chantal Hartog


We examine the impact of ambitious entrepreneurship (entrepreneurs expecting to grow their firm) and high-growth firms (firms that have actually realized high growth rates) on subsequent macroeconomic growth in a sample of high and low-income countries, in the period 2002-2005. Our empirical evidence shows that once we control for the share of ambitious entrepreneurs the overall positive effect of entrepreneurship on macroeconomic growth disappears. Growthoriented entrepreneurship seems to contribute heavily to macroeconomic growth in both low- and high-income countries. In low-income countries, the overall positive effect of entrepreneurship on macroeconomic growth does not disappear after introducing the share of ambitious entrepreneurs into the statistical model. In contrast to ambitious entrepreneurship in nascent and young businesses, established high-growth firms do not seem to contribute to macroeconomic growth.These established high-growth firms seem to flourish in countries with high levels of entrepreneurship in general, while there appears to be no connection between the rate of high-growth firms and the share of ambitious entrepreneurs.

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  • André van Stel & Roy Thurik & F. Stam & Chantal Hartog, 2010. "Ambitious entrepreneurship, high-growth firms and macroeconomic growth," Scales Research Reports H200911, EIM Business and Policy Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:eim:papers:h200911

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    Cited by:

    1. Daunfeldt, Sven-Olov & Elert, Niklas & Johansson, Dan, 2010. "The Economic Contribution of High-Growth Firms: Do Definitions Matter?," Ratio Working Papers 151, The Ratio Institute.
    2. Bellmann, Lisa & Brixy, Udo, 2018. "Hiring by start-ups and regional labor supply," IAB-Discussion Paper 201818, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    3. Ingrid Wakkee & Marijke Van Der Veen & Willo Eurlings, 2015. "Effective Growth Paths for SMEs," Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Emerging Economies, Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India, vol. 24(2), pages 169-185, September.
    4. HERMANS, Julie & VANDERSTRAETEN, Johanna & DEJARDIN, Marcus & RAMDANI, Dendi & STAM, Erik & VAN WITTELOOSTUIJN, Arjen, 2012. "Ambitious entrepreneurship: Antecedents and consequences," Working Papers 2012023, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Business and Economics.
    5. Prieger, James E. & Bampoky, Catherine & Blanco, Luisa R. & Liu, Aolong, 2016. "Economic Growth and the Optimal Level of Entrepreneurship," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 95-109.
    6. Nora Hesse & Rolf Sternberg, 2017. "Alternative growth patterns of university spin-offs: why so many remain small?," International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 953-984, September.

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