The Impact of Regional Age Structure on Entrepreneurship

Werner Boente*, Oliver Falck, Stephan Heblich

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

74 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Empirical studies based on individual data have found an inverse U-shaped relationship between age and the decision to start a business. Other studies have shown that becoming an entrepreneur is a regional event, with potential entrepreneurs benefiting from their local networks. This article links both strands of literature by introducing age-specific peer effects. Using changes in the age distribution of the population of western German regions over time, we found-in accordance with microlevel analyses-an inverse U-shaped relationship between the regional age structure and start-up activity in a region. Moreover, our findings suggest that the age-specific likelihood of becoming an entrepreneur changes with the size of the age cohort, pointing to the existence of age-specific peer effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-287
Number of pages19
JournalEconomic Geography
Volume85
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009

Keywords

  • demography
  • occupational choice
  • regional entrepreneurship
  • age-specific peer effects
  • SELF-EMPLOYMENT
  • DATA MODELS
  • INTELLIGENCE
  • RISK
  • IDENTIFICATION
  • INNOVATION
  • KNOWLEDGE
  • GEOGRAPHY
  • NETWORKS
  • BEHAVIOR

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