Why Do Entrepreneurial Parents Have Entrepreneurial Children?

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


We explore the origins of the intergenerational association in entrepreneurship using Swedish adoption data that allow us to quantify the relative importance of prebirth and postbirth factors. We find that parental entrepreneurship increases the probability of children's entrepreneurship by about 60%. For adoptees, both biological and adoptive parents make significant contributions to this association. These contributions, however, are quite different in size. Postbirth factors account for twice as much as prebirth factors in our decomposition of the intergenerational association in entrepreneurship. We investigate several candidate explanations for this large postbirth factor and present suggestive evidence in favor of role modeling.

Publication information

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Labor Economics
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)269-296
StatePublished - 2015

ID: 43932477