Human capital in social and commercial entrepreneurship

Saul Estrin*, Tomasz Mickiewicz, Ute Stephan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We advance research on human capital and entrepreneurial entry and posit that, in order to generate value, social entrepreneurship requires different configurations of human capital than commercial entrepreneurship. We develop a multilevel framework to analyse the commonalities and differences between social and commercial entrepreneurship, including the impact of general and specific human capital, of national context and its moderating effect on the human capital-entrepreneurship relationship. We find that specific entrepreneurial human capital is relatively more important in commercial entrepreneurship, and general human capital in social entrepreneurship, and that the effects of human capital depend on the rule of law.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449–467
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Business Venturing
Issue number4
Early online date29 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016

Bibliographical note

© 2016, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


  • entrepreneurship
  • entrepreneurial behaviour
  • social entrepreneurs
  • social entrepreneurship
  • human capital
  • institutional environment
  • institutional economics


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