Regional Social Legitimacy of Entrepreneurship: Implications for Entrepreneurial Intention and Start-up Behaviour
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This article provides a new understanding of the role of regional culture in individual entrepreneurial activity. It conceptualizes and examines how perceptions of the desirability and appropriateness of entrepreneurship in a region (?regional social legitimacy?) influence an individual?s entrepreneurial intentions and their subsequent translation into start-up behaviour. The multilevel regression analysis utilizes a combination of longitudinal survey data on working-age individuals and variables capturing regional socio-economic characteristics derived from official statistics. The study, comprising 2025 individuals from 65 regions of Austria and Finland, demonstrates that, and explains how, regional social legitimacy influences the relationships between individual entrepreneurial beliefs, intentions and start-up behaviour and how these interaction effects are conditioned by the socio-economic characteristics of the region.