Abstract

This study takes a population ecology perspective to uncover the influence that social venture creation exerts on commercial venture creation. Data from 88 Ohio counties during 2003-2007 uncovered a negative relationship suggesting that social ventures compete for resources with commercial ventures at the time of founding. Additionally, we found that government spending and income levels in the county affected not only the creation rates in each population, but also the inter-population dynamics. Specifically, lower income levels lowered commercial start-up rates while also exacerbating the competitive relationship between social and commercial ventures. Low levels of government spending were also found to suppress commercial start-up rates.

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