Who Intends to Enroll in Entrepreneurship Education? Entrepreneurial Self-Identity as a Precursor

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Entrepreneurial self-identity is attracting increasing attention as a potentially relevantvariable in explaining the entrepreneurial process. So far, most research treats entrepreneurialself-identity as a consequence of, or, at the most, as being developedthrough the start-up process. In this article, in contrast, we analyze its role as aprevious element that helps determine the entrepreneurial intention of individuals,the perceived usefulness of entrepreneurship education, and, indirectly, their interestin participating in entrepreneurship education courses. Our hypotheses are testedon a sample of Italian university students and graduates (N¼88) with no previousparticipation in entrepreneurship education or self-employment experience. Theresults clearly support the proposed model. The implications of these results, iffurther confirmed, are highly relevant. They indicate that there is a strong risk ofself-selection bias in most entrepreneurship education evaluation studies. This is dueto an element of reversed causation in which participants who already exhibit ahigher entrepreneurial self-identity are more interested in entrepreneurship. Atthe same time, these results also suggest that professionals and public decisionmakersinvolved in fostering entrepreneurship should pay attention to the developmentof this entrepreneurial self-identity in childhood and adolescence.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)222-242
Numero di pagine21
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2018


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