Title: Entrepreneurship education and the intention to start a business: the moderating role of cognitive biases

Authors: Oliver Thomas; Torsten Wulf

Addresses: Philipps-University Marburg, Universitätsstr. 24, 35037 Marburg, Germany ' Philipps-University Marburg, Universitätsstr. 24, 35037 Marburg, Germany

Abstract: Entrepreneurship education has been introduced and promoted at many universities throughout the world with the aim of fostering economic growth and employment. However, research has shown only weak effects of entrepreneurship education programs on participants' intentions to start a business, which has given rise to a debate about the effectiveness of such programs. Accordingly, researchers have called for consideration of variables that might moderate this relationship. This study attempts to fill this gap by examining the effect of three cognitive biases as possible moderators of the relationship between entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurial intentions: overoptimism, overconfidence, and the planning fallacy. The results indicate that overoptimism and the planning fallacy moderate the effects of entrepreneurship education. The study also shows that entrepreneurship education has a significant, positive impact on entrepreneurial intentions. Our results have implications for entrepreneurship education scholars, university managers, and developers of entrepreneurship programs.

Keywords: entrepreneurship; education; entrepreneurial intentions; cognitive biases; cognition; overoptimism; overconfidence; planning fallacy; venture creation; venture formation.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEV.2019.102260

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing, 2019 Vol.11 No.5, pp.413 - 439

Received: 16 Dec 2017
Accepted: 31 May 2018

Published online: 05 Sep 2019 *

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