Uncertainty Avoidance and the Rate of Business Ownership Across 21 OECD Countries, 1976-2004
Persistent differences in the level of business ownership across countries have attracted the attention of scientific as well as political debate. Cultural as well as economic influences are assumed to play a role. This paper deals with the influence of cultural attitudes towards uncertainty on the level of business ownership across 21 OECD countries. The concepts of uncertainty and risk are elaborated, as well as their relevance for entrepreneurship. An occupational choice model is introduced to underpin users reasoning at the macro-level. Regression analysis using pooled macro data for 1976, 1990 and 2004 and controlling for several economic variables, yields evidence that uncertainty avoidance is positively correlated with the prevalence of business ownership.