Human capital determinants of the survival of entrepreneurial service firms in Spain

  • Iván ArribasEmail author
  • José E. Vila


The claim of this paper is that an entrepreneur’s human capital constitutes a key determinant of the survival time of new service industry companies created in Spain. To confirm this claim, a series of survival models has been specified and estimated for a sample of 237 Spanish service industry companies founded by one or more entrepreneurs between the years 2000 and 2004. We found that (1) both general and specific human capital have a positive impact on the survival time of a new firm and (2) human capital is accumulative, in the sense that the larger the number of entrepreneurs founding the company, the longer its survival time. We find that the specific aspects of human capital that are determinants of a company’s survival time are gender, previous work experience in the same activity or as the owner of a firm, and the number of partners. However, educational and training characteristics do not play a relevant role as regards a firm’s survival time. These facts suggest the presence of a gap between the objectives and results of current entrepreneurial-oriented training in Spain.


Entrepreneurship Human capital Survival time Hazard models 



The authors would like to acknowledge the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science for their financial support under project SEJ2004-07554.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Economic Analysis, Laboratory for Research in Experimental Economics (LINEEX)University of ValenciaValenciaSpain

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