Nascent Entrepreneurs, Psychological Characteristics, and Sociocultural Background: Psycho-Sociocultural Background of Nascent Entrepreneurs

Nascent Entrepreneurs, Psychological Characteristics, and Sociocultural Background: Psycho-Sociocultural Background of Nascent Entrepreneurs

José C. Sánchez-García (University of Salamanca, Spain) and Brizeida R. Hernández-Sánchez (University of Salamanca, Spain)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2936-1.ch005
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Entrepreneurial intention as a psychological process has been investigated from several points of view which, although employing similar methodologies, have used different variables. Our aim here is to explain the reasons why some individuals tend more towards entrepreneurship than others. For these explanations we look towards Schwartz's Theory of Cultural Values. Schwarz structures cultural values in relation to three bipolar dimensions: conservation vs autonomy, hierarchy vs egalitarianism and mastery vs harmony. To analyse these variables, we applied the EOQ scale to a sample of 600 nascent entrepreneurs aged between 25 and 35, pertaining to different autonomous communities in Spain. After application and evaluation of the results, it can be concluded that there are significant differences in the personal, contextual and entrepreneurial intention variables as regards gender, parent's occupation(s) and autonomous community
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Entrepreneurship plays a crucial role in the development of a country, since its considered a critical factor in promoting innovation, creating employment opportunities and generating social welfare and development (Wong, Ho & Autio, 2005). Such is its impact that some authors have labelled entrepreneurs as the “engines of economic growth” in the development of a given country (Baron & Shane, 2008). More specifically, job creation has been considered as one of the principal contributions of entrepreneurs.

Researchers also agree that entrepreneurs are made and not born and that entrepreneurs can be trained (Boulton & Turner, 2005; Mellor et al., 2009; Sánchez, 2013). Thus, the importance of considering the factors that make someone an entrepreneur, as well as the topics related to the forming of entrepreneurs (Kadir, Salim & Kamarudin, 2012). In other words, people do not suddenly turn into entrepreneurs without certain triggering factors, and more importantly, without having the intention to be an entrepreneur. It is therefore critical for us to understand what factors influence self-employment intention; hence investigating the determinants of such an intention is a crucial step for identifying ways in which to train competitive entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneurial intention has been widely studied (Carr & Sequeira, 2007; Kautonen, Luoto & Tornikoski, 2010; Tornikoski, Erno & Kautonen, 2009). Nonetheless, the results of studies into the determinants of entrepreneurial intention vary in relation to different countries and cultures (Boulton & Turner, 2005). More studies are thus needed in local contexts to increase the relevance and validity of previous results. Furthermore, although many studies use the theory of planned behaviour (TPB) to predict entrepreneurial intention, certain limitations can be identified in this type of approach. Some recent studies (do Paço, Ferreira, Raposo, Rodrigues, & Dinis, 2011; van Gelderen et al., 2008) do not consider any other variables in their TPB model for predicting this intention. Although Fini, Grimaldi, Marzocchi, and Sobrero (2012), Schwarz, Wdowiak, Almer-Jarz, and Breitenecker (2009), and Sommer and Haug (2011) have extended the model, certain variables were not considered in their studies either, such as the participants’ personality traits or beliefs regarding entrepreneurship. These limitations mean that the determinants of entrepreneurial intention still need to be clarified.

Previous research has shown that personality traits influence venture creation (Mueller & Thomas, 2001). It can even be said that the influence of personality traits is the strongest determinant in the intention to start a business (Nga & Shamuganathan, 2010). Individuals with personality traits such as risk taking propensity and internal locus of control tend to be more entrepreneurial and committed to entrepreneurial activities such as starting up a new business (Thomas & Mueller, 2000; Utsch & Rauch, 2000).

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