Abstract

Academic entrepreneurship and the commercialization of university-based science are important sources of technological innovation underlying economic and social development. The structure of science remains strongly gendered, and substantial efforts are being made to understand why women are less likely than men to pursue academic careers in science and engineering disciplines. In contrast, little effort has gone into exploring differences between men and women scientists in whether they pursue entrepreneurship. We do not, for example, know whether the same barriers that seem to keep women from pursuing science also affect their perceptions of the desirability and feasibility of becoming entrepreneurs. We extend recent work in founder identity theory by asking: How do identity processes shape similarities and differences in academic entrepreneurship among men and women?

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