Indexed on: 07 Apr '11Published on: 07 Apr '11Published in: Small Business Economics
The current paper analyzes the role of the individual and regional knowledge context in forming university students’ entrepreneurial intentions. As access to knowledge resources is crucial for the growth and survival of knowledge-based start-ups, we argue that an individual’s decision in favor or against becoming an entrepreneur should critically depend on the multilevel context providing her with access to strategically relevant knowledge. A unique dataset for German students and regions allows us to analyze a variety of personal and regional determinants of entrepreneurial intentions among students. At the individual level we find that role models facilitating the transfer of tacit knowledge and the expectation that strong ties will provide know-how and know-who positively impact entrepreneurial intentions. At the regional level we find that a high regional start-up rate in knowledge-based industries and a high growth rate of regional knowledge production positively influence entrepreneurial intentions.