Abstract

The existing entrepreneurship literature is largely silent on the question of how entrepreneur’s job growth aspirations might be determined across institutional contexts. The two relevant recent contributions in the literature are Bowen and De Clercq (2008), who analyse the impact of the institutional environment on the allocation of entrepreneurial effort toward high-growth activities using aggregate data, and Autio and Acs (2010), who focus on a single institutional dimension, namely intellectual property rights, and its effect on entrepreneurs’ growth aspirations. In this study we provide a more general theoretical and empirical framework and focus on planned employment growth rates rather than the number of jobs which entrepreneurs aspire to create, given some superiority of the former to more accurately measure employment growth aspirations. Our framework generates hypotheses on the institutional factors influencing the expected size of new entrepreneurial firms at time of the start-up, in terms of the aspirations to generate employment five years hence.

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