Learning Entrepreneurship from Other Entrepreneurs?

53 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2015 Last revised: 3 Jul 2022

See all articles by Luigi Guiso

Luigi Guiso

Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF); Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance

Luigi Pistaferri

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Stanford University

Fabiano Schivardi

Luiss Guido Carli - Department of Economics and Finance; Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: December 2015

Abstract

We document that individuals who grew up in areas with high density of firms are more likely, as adults, to become entrepreneurs, controlling for the density of firms in their current location. Conditional on becoming entrepreneurs, the same individuals are also more likely to be successful entrepreneurs, as measured by business income or firm productivity. Strikingly, firm density at entrepreneur’s young age is more important than current firm density for business performance. These results are not driven by better access to external finance or intergenerational occupation choices. They are instead consistent with entrepreneurial capabilities being at least partly learnable through social contacts. In keeping with this interpretation, we find that entrepreneurs who at the age of 18 lived in areas with a higher firm density tend to adopt better managerial practices (enhancing productivity) later in life.

Suggested Citation

Guiso, Luigi and Guiso, Luigi and Pistaferri, Luigi and Pistaferri, Luigi and Schivardi, Fabiano, Learning Entrepreneurship from Other Entrepreneurs? (December 2015). NBER Working Paper No. w21775, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2700004

Luigi Guiso (Contact Author)

Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF) ( email )

Via Sallustiana 62
Rome, 00187
Italy
+39 06 4792 4858 (Phone)
+39 06 4792 4872 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.eief.it/faculty-visitors/faculty-a-z/luigi-guiso/

Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance ( email )

Via Sallustiana 62
rome, 00187
Italy

Luigi Pistaferri

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Fabiano Schivardi

Luiss Guido Carli - Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

Viale Romania 32
Rome, Rome 00187
Italy

Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF) ( email )

Via Due Macelli, 73
Rome, 00187
Italy

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

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