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The Superstar Inventors and Entrepreneurs: How Were They Educated?

18 Pages Posted: 13 Oct 2009  

William J. Baumol

New York University - Stern School of Business, Berkley Center for Entrepreneurial Studies; Leonard N. Stern School of Business - Department of Economics

Melissa A. Schilling

New York University (NYU) - Department of Management and Organizational Behavior

Edward N. Wolff

New York University (NYU) - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Bard College - Levy Economics Institute

Abstract

Observations, such as the many celebrated inventive entrepreneurs with minimal schooling, lead to the hypothesis that protracted and rigorous education can impede entrepreneurship. Systematic analysis of biographies of noted inventors and entrepreneurs appears not to support the hypothesis. We do find that with time, entrepreneurial and inventor education increases as technology grows more complex. However, we find at the same time that the educational attainment of inventors has grown more rapidly than that of entrepreneurs and the educational gap has tended to widen over time.

Suggested Citation

Baumol, William J. and Schilling, Melissa A. and Wolff, Edward N., The Superstar Inventors and Entrepreneurs: How Were They Educated?. Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Vol. 18, Issue 3, pp. 711-728, Fall 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1486836 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1530-9134.2009.00227.x

William J. Baumol (Contact Author)

New York University - Stern School of Business, Berkley Center for Entrepreneurial Studies ( email )

New York, NY
United States
212-998-8943 (Phone)
212-995-3932 (Fax)

Leonard N. Stern School of Business - Department of Economics

269 Mercer Street
New York, NY 10003
United States

Melissa A. Schilling

New York University (NYU) - Department of Management and Organizational Behavior ( email )

40 West Fourth Street
New York, NY 10012
United States
212-998-0249 (Phone)
212-995-4235 (Fax)

Edward N. Wolff

New York University (NYU) - Department of Economics ( email )

269 Mercer Street, 7th Floor
New York, NY 10011
United States
212-998-8917 (Phone)
212-995-4186 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Bard College - Levy Economics Institute

Blithewood
Annandale-on-Hudson, NY 12504
United States

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