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Religious beliefs and entrepreneurship among Dutch protestants

Author

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  • Rietveld, C.A.
  • van Burg, E.

Abstract

Religious beliefs affect the economic behavior of individuals. The aim of this study is to investigate the relation between religious beliefs and entrepreneurship. Empirical evidence that entrepreneurship rates differ among religions suggests that religious beliefs influence the pursuit of entrepreneurship. However, how and which specific religious beliefs play a role in this relationship remains unknown. Therefore, we study the relation between two key religious beliefs and entrepreneurship within one specific branch of Christianity, namely, Protestantism. Using a unique sample of 756 Christian protestant entrepreneurs and employees from the Netherlands, we show that protestant entrepreneurs have a stronger belief than comparable protestant employees that their work is a calling from God and that protestant entrepreneurs are more likely to perceive a duty to add value to society through their occupational work. These results indicate that research on the relation between religion and entrepreneurship is instrumental in explaining the engagement of people in entrepreneurship.

Suggested Citation

  • Rietveld, C.A. & van Burg, E., 2013. "Religious beliefs and entrepreneurship among Dutch protestants," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2013-015-STR, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
  • Handle: RePEc:ems:eureri:41554
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Christianity; beliefs; entrepreneurship; protestantism; religion;

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • L20 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - General
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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