Drawing on representative household data from the German Socio-Economic Panel, we examine the role of an early precursor of entrepreneurial development - parental role models - for the individual decision to become self-employed in the post-unified Germany. The findings suggest that the socialist regime significantly damaged this mechanism of an intergenerational transmission of entrepreneurial attitudes among East Germans with a tertiary degree that have experienced a particularly strong ideological indoctrination. However, we find a significant and positive relationship between the presence of a parental role model and the decision to become self-employed for less-educated people. For West Germans the positive relationship holds irrespective of the level of education.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship, parental role models, human capital
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