Date of Award

Spring 5-2017

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Human Capital Development

Committee Chair

Dr. Cyndi H. Gaudet

Committee Chair Department

Human Capital Development

Committee Member 2

Dr. Heather M. Annulis

Committee Member 2 Department

Human Capital Development

Committee Member 3

Dr. H. Quincy Brown

Committee Member 3 Department

Human Capital Development

Committee Member 4

Dr. Dale L. Lunsford

Committee Member 4 Department

Human Capital Development

Abstract

The global financial crisis (GFC) that began in 2007 negatively impacted new business creation (Davidsson & Gordon, 2015). Entrepreneurship has been identified as a viable way to generate jobs in the United States since the 1970s (U.S. Small Business Administration, 2014). However, the literature suggests that there has been a decline in entrepreneurship in the United States (Clifton, 2015; Singh & Ogbolu, 2015). Capital is important to those individuals involved in entrepreneurship (Cetindamar, Gupta, Karadeniz, & Egrican, 2012), specifically, human capital and the social network connections or social capital resources of the entrepreneur (Becker, 1993; Schutjens & Völker, 2010).

This study determined the relationship between demographic, human capital, and social capital characteristics of nascent entrepreneurs and expected job growth in the United States. Human capital and social capital theories formed the foundation for the researcher's conceptual framework for this study. The study proposed a model with five variables based on the literature to determine the relationship between demographic, human capital, and social capital characteristics of nascent entrepreneurs and expected job growth in the United States: age, gender, education level, knowing other entrepreneurs, and previous business angel investing experience. If the relationships between the human and social capital characteristics and demonstrated job growth relative to becoming a successful entrepreneur are not properly identified, then policymakers and educators could struggle to design and build the training and education infrastructure to support entrepreneur development, generate jobs, and grow the economy.

Descriptive statistics, chi-square, and logistic regression analyses were used to analyze a census (N = 387) of nascent entrepreneur respondents participating in the 2011 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) survey in the United States. The descriptive statistics found that the census of nascent entrepreneurs was predominantly male, ages 35-44 years, college-educated with a bachelor’s degree or higher, and almost half that knew another entrepreneur. The logistic regression analysis of the GEM nascent entrepreneur data found that the age groups 35-44 and 65 and older significantly influenced expected job growth. Possible implications of this research include the development of more effective entrepreneurial training programs in the United States.

ORCID ID

orcid.org/0000-0003-2808-945X

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