A Built Economy in Education, Sustainability and Regulation
Edited by Jean Bonnet, Marcus Dejardin and Antonia Madrid-Guijarro
Chapter 3: The Decision to Become an Entrepreneur: A Cognitive Perspective
Alicia Rubio Bañón, Antonio Aragón Sánchez and Paula Sastre Vivaracho INTRODUCTION The renewed interest in entrepreneurship by government policy makers and business leaders worldwide has been prompted by several factors. It is a driving force in stimulating economic growth, wealth and prosperity. It stimulates economic performance by introducing innovations, creating change and stimulating competition (Naude, 2010). It is also seen as a means of revitalizing stagnating industries and providing new jobs to compensate for employment problems created by the economic crisis. An entrepreneur is any active person, aged between 18 and 64, who is engaged in the process of starting up a business initiative. Coverage is thus given to all kinds of entrepreneurial activities from self-employment to the development of any corporate activity (Levie and Autio, 2008). Moreover, being an entrepreneur is not only business ownership or self-employment. An entrepreneur seeks to identify opportunities, respond to environmental changes and take appropriate actions to achieve performance (Hau-siu, 2006). In other words, they are individuals who launch new products, implement new production methods, open new markets, incorporate new sources of supply or new forms of organization (Schumpeter, 1934; Kirzner, 1973; Sharma and Chrisman, 1999). In recent years, most of the economics literature related to entrepreneurship has focused on employment choices and on the various motivations that lead some individuals to become entrepreneurs (Arenius and Minniti, 2005). Some empirical studies have also established the influence of contextual factors in the creation of businesses (Levie and Autio, 2008). Other factors considered...
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