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Entrepreneurial Couples

  • Dahl, Michael S.

    ()

    (Aalborg University)

  • van Praag, Mirjam C.

    ()

    (Copenhagen Business School)

  • Thompson, Peter

    ()

    (Georgia Institute of Technology)

We study possible motivations for co-entrepreneurial couples to start up a joint firm, using a sample of 1,069 Danish couples that established a joint enterprise between 2001 and 2010. We compare their pre-entry characteristics, firm performance and post-dissolution private and financial outcomes with a selected set of comparable firms and couples. We find evidence that couples often establish a business together because one spouse – most commonly the female – has limited outside opportunities in the labor market. However, the financial benefits for each of the spouses, and especially the female, are larger in co-entrepreneurial firms, both during the life of the business and post-dissolution. The start-up of co-entrepreneurial firms seems therefore a sound in-vestment in the human capital of both spouses as well as in the reduction of income inequality in the household. We find no evidence of non-pecuniary benefits or costs of co-entrepreneurship.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 8186.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: May 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8186
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  1. Hans K. Hvide & Jarle Møen, 2010. "Lean and Hungry or Fat and Content? Entrepreneurs' Wealth and Start-Up Performance," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 56(8), pages 1242-1258, August.
  2. Douglas Holtz-Eakin & David Joulfaian & Harvey S. Rosen, 1994. "Entrepreneurial Decisions and Liquidity Constraints," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(2), pages 334-347, Summer.
  3. Marianne Bertrand & Jessica Pan & Emir Kamenica, 2013. "Gender Identity and Relative Income within Households," NBER Working Papers 19023, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Davidsson, Per & Honig, Benson, 2003. "The role of social and human capital among nascent entrepreneurs," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 301-331, May.
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  6. Alex Coad & Bram Timmermans, 2012. "Two's Company: Human Capital Composition and Performance of Entrepreneurial Pairs," DRUID Working Papers 12-12, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  7. Mariagrazia Squicciarini & Marie Le Mouel, 2012. "Defining and Measuring Investment in Organisational Capital: Using US Microdata to Develop a Task-based Approach," OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers 2012/5, OECD Publishing.
  8. Martin C. Schmalz & David A. Sraer & David Thesmar, 2013. "Housing Collateral and Entrepreneurship," NBER Working Papers 19680, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  10. Blanchflower, D. & Oswald, A., 1990. "What Makes A Young Entrepreneur?," Papers 373, London School of Economics - Centre for Labour Economics.
  11. Anna Aizer, 2010. "The Gender Wage Gap and Domestic Violence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1847-59, September.
  12. Robert W. Fairlie & Harry A. Krashinsky, 2012. "Liquidity Constraints, Household Wealth, And Entrepreneurship Revisited," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 58(2), pages 279-306, 06.
  13. Lindh, Thomas & Ohlsson, Henry, 1996. "Self-Employment and Windfall Gains: Evidence from the Swedish Lottery," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(439), pages 1515-26, November.
  14. Ensley, Michael D. & Pearson, Allison W. & Amason, Allen C., 2002. "Understanding the dynamics of new venture top management teams: cohesion, conflict, and new venture performance," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 365-386, July.
  15. Evans, David S & Jovanovic, Boyan, 1989. "An Estimated Model of Entrepreneurial Choice under Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 808-27, August.
  16. Neal, Derek, 1995. "Industry-Specific Human Capital: Evidence from Displaced Workers," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(4), pages 653-77, October.
  17. Erik Hurst & Annamaria Lusardi, 2004. "Liquidity Constraints, Household Wealth, and Entrepreneurship," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 319-347, April.
  18. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2005. "Modeling and measuring organization capital," Staff Report 291, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  19. Niels Bosma & Mirjam van Praag & Roy Thurik & Gerrit de Wit, 2004. "The Value of Human and Social Capital Investments for the Business Performance of Startups," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 23(3), pages 227-236, October.
  20. Michael S. Dahl & Olav Sorenson, 2012. "Home Sweet Home: Entrepreneurs' Location Choices and the Performance of Their Ventures," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 58(6), pages 1059-1071, June.
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