Job Creation and Job Types: New Evidence from Danish Entrepreneurs

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We extend earlier analyses of the job creation of start-ups versus established firms by considering the educational content of the jobs created and destroyed. We define education-specific measures of job creation and job destruction at the firm level, and we use these measures to construct a measure of “surplus job creation”, defined as jobs created on top of any simultaneous destruction of similar jobs in incumbent firms in the same region and industry. Using Danish employer-employee data from 2002–2007 that identify the start-ups and that cover almost the entire private sector, these measures allow us to provide a more nuanced assessment of the role of entrepreneurial firms in the job-creation process than in previous studies. Our findings show that although start-ups are responsible for the entire overall net job creation, incumbents account for more than one-third of net job creation within high-skilled jobs. Moreover, start-ups “only” create approximately half of the surplus jobs and even less of the high-skilled surplus jobs. Finally, our approach allows us to characterise and identify differences across industries, educational groups and regions.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Economic Review
Pages (from-to)161-187
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016


  • Job creation
  • Entrepreneurial firms
  • Start-ups
  • Surplus job creation

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