Entrepreneurial Motivation in change: A study on Science Based Entrepreneurs and their levels of motivation

Filippa Dracke

Student thesis: Master thesis


Due to the increasing importance of entrepreneurship as a key driver to economic growth and technology progress there has been a distinct increase in academic attention to the field (Schumpeter, 1942; Shane et al, 2003; Carsrud & Bränback, 2011). Past entrepreneurial research has often been focused on the discovery of opportunity (Christiansen, 1997) and the environment that venture ideas spur from (Aldrich, 2000). However, recently scholar Shane et al (2003) highlighted that the field often fails to include the importance that there is a human agent evolved in the entrepreneurial process. Since motivation influence the entrepreneurs’ decision process and thereby the business opportunity and the growth of a company it is interesting to further investigate Entrepreneurial Motivation and if it evolves during the venture. As the entrepreneur affect the aspirations of the company it is also further interesting to research if there is a relation between the level of motivation and performance. (Shane et al, 2003; Baum & Locke, 2004; Carsrud & Bränback, 2011; Krabel & Mueller, 2009) Lately a new type of entrepreneurs with roots from academia and science has emerged, which in turn has caught the attention of scholars (Mcmillan et al, 2000 in Krebel & Mueller, 2009). Scientifically based ventures have become evident to our society as they are not only pursuing new industries like nanotechnology or bio technology but also pushing the development of existing industries (Krabel & Mueller, 2009). A survey was conducted on 94 Science Based founders. The findings from the survey indicate that motivation change during the entrepreneurial process and that income, confidence and occupation change. The results also indicate a relationship between perceived motivational change and perceived performance of the venture. It was not possible to say how strong the relationship was. The findings have contributed to new knowledge within entrepreneurship but future research is needed. How Entrepreneurial Motivation drivers are related to the activities in the venture and the strength of the relationship between performance and perceived motivation is extra interesting to further research.

EducationsMSc in Management of Innovation and Business Development, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2014
Number of pages107