Firm Size and the Quality of Entrepreneurs

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IZA Seminar

Place: Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 9, 53113 Bonn

Date: 22.02.2005, 12:15 - 13:30


Presentation by 

Hans K. Hvide (University of Bergen)


Founders of new firms tend to be experienced workers pursuing opportunities related to their previous employment. The paper proposes a simple framework to study the interaction between individual workers’ entrepreneurship decision and established firms’ effort to keep their best workers and ideas. The main insights are twofold. First, taking the firm size as given, larger firms tend to have less fine-tuned wage setting and produce entrepreneurs of higher quality than smaller firms. Second, making firm size endogenous, stronger property rights protection makes the optimal firm size larger (and the average quality of entrepreneurs higher). I apply these ideas to entrepreneurs data from a Stanford MBA alumni survey and firm size data from the U.S. software industry.

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