The are various opinion whether entrepreneurs are more or less risk-averse than the general population. The commonly held belief is that they are less so, but the contrary opinion exists as well. There's even one small survey in the UK that seems to back up this view.

Is there more empirical research in this respect?

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    $\begingroup$ The question is a valid one but the link to the survey is a poor reference. You are not linking to a statistical description of the survey, you are linking to a news piece. The piece does try to link to the survey but their link is dead. What they do quote from the survey makes their interpretation a strange one: "52% described themselves as having one of three risk-averse character traits--wary, prudent, or deliberate." These are fairly normal traits, I would not associate any of them with extreme risk aversion. $\endgroup$
    – Giskard
    Dec 28, 2017 at 9:53

1 Answer 1


Interestingly—and much in contrast to recent research—our data supports the conventional wisdom that persons with a higher inclination towards risk have a significantly higher probability of becoming entrepreneurs. However, sensitivity analysis reveals that this result holds only for those individuals who were previously employed. For previously unemployed or inactive persons, we find no significant influence of risk attitudes, indicating that other variables drive their decision towards self-employment.

Caliendo et al. (2009)

The Conclusions section of the paper lists several other research papers with slightly different conclusions, you may also want to read those.


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