THE EFFECTS OF UNIVERSITY´S SOCIAL CAPITAL ON STUDENTS´ ENTREPRENEURIAL INTENTIONS
1 Tecnológico de Monterrey (MEXICO)
2 Universidad de Cantabria (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Conference name: 6th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2013
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:Entrepreneurship has become one of the most far-reaching phenomena of our time. Implications of economic, political and social character have permeated our institutions, including universities. On the latter, more and more have incorporated entrepreneurship into their curricula and teaching modules in recent decades. However, the challenge remains latent, coupled with new government regulations that provide for the promotion of entrepreneurship in education to incorporate specific goals at every educational level, and develop skills and competences as to encourage entrepreneurial intentions among students. This further demonstrates the important role played by universities in the career implications for students, and at the same time facilitating the new venture creation process. Although universities represent an institution that contributes to human and social capital development of the individual, for purposes of this study we focus on the latter and its relationship to entrepreneurial intention on senior students. While interest in social capital in entrepreneurship literature has significantly increased in the last decade, several authors conclude that research is far from complete. This is mainly due to the simplification of the role of social capital, assuming that it is unitary regardless of context, in addition to the limited discussion of the dimensions of social capital and personal factors that interact and influence entrepreneurial behavior.
Social capital as a product of all social interaction, facilitates the flow and quality of information, and is also a critical component of the entrepreneurial opportunities. Therefore, social capital should cover various aspects of the context of study, such as trust relationships, norms and values that may or may not facilitate the action of individuals located within that environment. This leads us to formulate several hypotheses on the impact of social capital embedded in the university context as a determinant of students´ entrepreneurial intentions. Therefore, considering Ajzen´s theory of planned behavior and Krueger´s intentions models, with references to Bandura's social cognitive theory, this study considers the relationship of university´s social capital on both the self-efficacy and the entrepreneurial intention of the student. In addition, following Nahapiet & Ghoshal, social capital is analyzed in three dimensions based on structural, cognitive and relational resources. This allows us to analyze the university´s social capital dimensions that have not been addressed in the literature before, and that in turn leads us to consider possible implications for the university context. This study proposes a structural equation model to contrast identified relationships between variables using a sample of 568 university students from Spain and Mexico.
Keywords: Entrepreneurial intention, Social capital, University context, University students.