The Entrepreneurial Intentions of Students in Central and Eastern European Countries

Jelena Hartšenko, Merle Küttim


Extensive studies on entrepreneurial intentions have confirmed its importance in the
decision to embark on a career in entrepreneurship. Previous studies have emphasised
different factors and their inter-connections that influence entrepreneurial intentions. The
use of the theory of planned behaviour to explain entrepreneurial intentions has proved a
powerful tool but considering the importance of different contexts and settings there is still
a need for cross-cultural studies. This research contributes to the literature on entrepreneurial
intentions by exploring the differences between the Central and Eastern European (CEE)
and developed European countries participating in the survey in the GUESSS project. The
results show the unique effect of attitudes to behaviour on entrepreneurial intentions in all
European countries. Moreover, the results indicate a higher internal orientation in students
from CEE countries and the lower importance of the judgement of other people in countries
with relatively short-lived business experience. Finally, growing up in the environment of a
family business, increases entrepreneurial intentions in CEE countries more than in
developed European countries.
JEL classification codes: I23, L26, M13
Keywords: entrepreneurial intentions, theory of planned behaviour, CEE countries, students

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