Beyond cultural values? Cultural leadership ideals and entrepreneurship

Ute Stephan*, Saurav Pathak

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This paper offers a fresh perspective on national culture and entrepreneurship research. It explores the role of Culturally-endorsed implicit Leadership Theories (CLTs) – i.e., the cultural expectations about outstanding, ideal leadership – on individual entrepreneurship. Developing arguments based on culture-entrepreneurship fit, we predict that charismatic and self-protective CLTs positively affect entrepreneurship. They provide a context that enables entrepreneurs to be co-operative in order to initiate change but also to be self-protective and competitive so as to safeguard their venture and avoid being exploited. We further theorize that CLTs are more proximal drivers of cross-country differences in entrepreneurship as compared with distal cultural values. We find support for our propositions in a multi-level study of 42 countries. Cultural values (of uncertainty avoidance and collectivism) influence entrepreneurship mainly indirectly, via charismatic and self-protective CLTs. We do not find a similar indirect effect for cultural practices.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)505-523
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Business Venturing
Volume31
Issue number5
Early online date17 Jul 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2016

Bibliographical note

© 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Keywords

  • entrepreneurial behaviour
  • entrepreneurship
  • culture
  • leadership
  • individualism
  • institutions
  • values
  • practices

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