The McGill International Entrepreneurship series
Edited by Hamid Etemad, Tage Koed Madsen, Erik S. Rasmussen and Per Servais
Chapter 9: The role of female- and male-specific traits in entrepreneurial activities
Scholars in entrepreneurship have lent great value by exploring the factors that explain entrepreneurial activity (Thornton et al. 2011). Researchers have identified specific underlying factors that motivate or encourage entrepreneurial activities (Mueller and Conway Date-On 2008). These factors can be divided into two basic groups, contextual and personal factors. Contextual factors are defined as those elements outside the control of the entrepreneur that will influence success or failure (Austin et al. 2006). Some examples of contextual factors that may influence entrepreneurial activity are separated into general economic factors, political factors (that is, laws and policies), social factors and cultural factors (Shane et al. 1991; Boyd and Vozikis 1994; Mueller et al. 2002; Khaleghy et al. 2010a). Personal factors are defined as those elements inside the control of the entrepreneur that will influence success or failure and they involve one person, such as genetics or upbringing (Chacha 2011). Empirical studies generally support the existence of a relationship between personal factors and intentions to become an entrepreneur (Sexton and Bowman-Upton 1990; Krueger 1993; Kolvereid 1996; Envick and Langford 2003, McGee et al. 2009).
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