Entrepreneurial knowledge and digital competenc: keys for a success of student entrepreneurship

Veronica Scuotto, Massimo Morellato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


Understanding forces that contribute to the birth of student entrepreneurship is very important, as the entrepreneurial attitude grows in a young student. Economists consider this type of entrepreneurship as a significant drive towards improving societal welfare, while experts of communication emphasize the inclination to entrepreneurial skills and innovation of this generation of entrepreneurs. Other studies have explored student entrepreneurs' ability to build inter-organizational relationships. Despite this entrepreneurial spirit, increasingly seen as a source of innovation in nearly all industries, knowledge is limited on how student entrepreneurship leads to the birth of new enterprises and the renewal of established organizations. Several authors of management studies have shown how higher education and training programs foster student entrepreneurship. No major study to date, however, has taken into consideration other factors, such as digital competence and informal collaborative networks, and assessed their respective influence on students' attitudes to starting a new business. This paper examines the available data provided by Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (2011) concerning student entrepreneurship in 40 countries across the world in order to evaluate the influence of these factors, using a PLS-Path Modeling analysis. The findings show that entrepreneurial knowledge is the most important factor in promoting student entrepreneurship, although the presence of informal collaborative networks and the ability to efficiently use the latest technology are also relevant in developing entrepreneurship attitude. The low technological capacity results for student entrepreneurship among the generation of native digital population is confirmation alone on the current importance of reconsidering the development of digital competence in higher education that goes beyond the simple training of technical skills.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-303
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the Knowledge Economy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • student entrepreneurship
  • building collaborative networks
  • knowledge
  • digital competence


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