'To Have and Have Not': Founders’ Human Capital and University Start-Up Survival

27 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2013 Last revised: 14 Mar 2014

See all articles by Giuseppe Criaco

Giuseppe Criaco

Jonkoping University - Jonkoping International Business School (JIBS)

Tommaso Minola

University of Bergamo

Pablo Migliorini

Autonomous University of Barcelona

Christian Serarols

Autonomous University of Barcelona

Date Written: June 7, 2013

Abstract

In order to preserve innovation, knowledge development and diffusion, as well as the transfer of new technologies, the emergence of University Start-Ups (USU) and their survival as a particular dimension of performance represents a relevant research topic. As USU generally have scarce initial resources, the human capital of their founders is one of their main business assets. Although the survival of such firms is supposed to be heavily dependent on the human capital characteristics of their founders, this has not received enough attention in existing research. In this paper we investigate the contribution of founders’ specific human capital characteristics to the survival of USU, building on Gimeno et al. (Adm Sci Q 42:750–783, 1997) threshold model of entrepreneurial exit. We divide USU founders’ specific human capital into three components (entrepreneurship, industry and university) in order to better understand its impact on firm survival. Our theoretical model is empirically tested on a unique sample of Catalan USU through a logistic regression analysis. Coherently with our theoretical reasoning, the results show that industry human capital negatively affect USU survival, while university human capital and entrepreneurship human capital enhance the likelihood of USU survival.

Keywords: Human capital, Survival, University start-up, University spin-off, Academic entrepreneurship, Threshold

JEL Classification: J24, L25, L26, O30

Suggested Citation

Criaco, Giuseppe and Minola, Tommaso and Migliorini, Pablo and Serarols, Christian, 'To Have and Have Not': Founders’ Human Capital and University Start-Up Survival (June 7, 2013). Journal of Technology Transfer, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2309872

Giuseppe Criaco (Contact Author)

Jonkoping University - Jonkoping International Business School (JIBS) ( email )

Jönköping, 55111
Sweden

Tommaso Minola

University of Bergamo ( email )

Via Salvecchio, 19
Bergamo, 24129
Italy

Pablo Migliorini

Autonomous University of Barcelona ( email )

Plaça Cívica
Cerdañola del Valles
Barcelona, Barcelona 08193
Spain

Christian Serarols

Autonomous University of Barcelona ( email )

Plaça Cívica
Cerdañola del Valles
Barcelona, Barcelona 08193
Spain

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