Why do entrepreneurial parents have entrepreneurial children?

Matthew J. Lindquist*, Joeri Sol, Mirjam Van Praag

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


We explore the origins of the intergenerational association in en-trepreneurship using Swedish adoption data that allow us to quantify the relative importance of prebirth and postbirth factors. We find that parental entrepreneurship increases the probability of children’s entrepreneurship by about 60%. For adoptees, both biological and adoptive parents make significant contributions to this association. These contributions, however, are quite different in size. Postbirth factors account for twice as much as prebirth factors in our decomposition of the intergenerational association in entrepre-neurship. We investigate several candidate explanations for this large postbirth factor and present suggestive evidence infavorofrole modeling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-296
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Labor Economics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2015
Externally publishedYes


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