Entrepreneurial Traits Revisited?

Justin Adelson at the MIT Entrepreneurship Center lets a recent episode of The Simpsons (obviously an important trend in the field) illustrate a discussion on entrepreneurial traits in entrepreneurship education. Adelson states that whether entrepreneurs are “made” or “born” is “is no longer relevant in this era.” The reason?

There are so many resources available to an individual that even if you are not born with entrepreneurial traits that make the Zuckerbergs successful you can still immerse yourself in the training.

Adelson’s post suggests that entrepreneurship education makes much difference for entrepreneurs. But at the same time, it has been shown that there is little connection between entrepreneurship education and economists’ understanding for the entrepreneurial function.

The issue of entrepreneurial traits and their practical significance may be of great importance for public policy and policy-related research. But from the point of view of economic theory, entrepreneurial traits should never have been of importance. In economics, scientific interest in entrepreneurship lies in the function of the entrepreneur rather than his (or her) psychological state or certain personality characteristics.

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