Networking Frictions in Venture Capital, and the Gender Gap in Entrepreneurship
56 Pages Posted: 23 Apr 2019 Last revised: 31 Jul 2020
Date Written: July 24, 2020
We find that male participants in Harvard Business School’s New Venture Competition who were randomly exposed to more VC investors on their panel were substantially more likely to start a VC-backed startup post-graduation, indicating that access to investors impacts fundraising independent of the quality of ideas. However, female participants experience no benefit from exposure to male or female VCs, which appears related to a reduced propensity to reach out to VCs to whom they were exposed. Our results therefore also demonstrate gender-based differences in the degree to which increased exposure to investors can address networking frictions in venture capital.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship, Venture Capital, Gender, Information Frictions, Networks
JEL Classification: G24, G14, J16
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation