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The purpose of this study is to investigate the influence that national levels of social capital have on entrepreneurial activity. Specifically, we argue that national and regional level social capital positively influences the ability of entrepreneurs to mobilize and access important resources thereby positively impacting the rate of entrepreneurship within nations and regions.Design/methodology/approachWe advance a multilevel and multidimensional conceptualization of social capital. Then based on a dataset of 68 nations and 665 within-nation regions, we empirically evaluate the effects of social capital at the national and regional level in explaining differences in entrepreneurial activity across nations and regions using a combination of regression analysis and multilevel hierarchical linear modeling (HLM).FindingsOur findings emphasize the importance of formulating a multilevel conceptualization of social capital for entrepreneurship research. We discuss the results, provide implications for public policy and suggest avenues for future research.Originality/valueThe overwhelming majority of entrepreneurship research focused on investigating the implications of social capital reside at the individual level of analysis. Our unique inquiry is an inaugural effort to consider this important implications at the macro and meso-level of analysis by examining both regional and national-level effects.
Cross Cultural & Strategic Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 3, 2022
Keywords: Social capital; Entrepreneurial activity; International entrepreneurship
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