Journal of Evolutionary Economics

, Volume 28, Issue 3, pp 495–522 | Cite as

Attachment orientations and entrepreneurship

  • Yaron Zelekha
  • Erez Yaakobi
  • Gil Avnimelech
Regular Article


This research presents a theoretical model and examines it empirically to associate attachment orientations with various types of entrepreneurs. The results show clear evidence that attachment orientations not only predict an adult’s tendency to become an entrepreneur but also the type of entrepreneur he will become. Specifically, the results show that attachment anxiety is the dimension that is the most responsible for the variability of becoming an entrepreneur, while anxiety and avoidant dimensions predict his characteristics and attitudes as an entrepreneur. This paper makes five important contributions to the research of both attachment theory and entrepreneurship. First, it adds to the theoretical understanding of the psychology of entrepreneurs. Second, the attachment theory enables us to extend our understanding beyond the predictions of personality traits regarding entrepreneurial intentions in order to further predict the type of entrepreneur he will turn out to be. Third, it stresses the role of early childhood events regarding the prediction of future entrepreneurial orientation. Fourth, it uses a unique data set of real young entrepreneurs in a single industry homogenous design in Israel, which is known worldwide as a startup nation. Fifth, it focuses on the opportunity validation stage (rather than the opportunity identification of the resource allocation stages), which is often neglected in entrepreneur personality research.


Attachment theory Entrepreneurship Necessity entrepreneur Opportunity entrepreneur Serial entrepreneur Portfolio entrepreneur 

JEL classification

L26 J13 


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Ono Academic CollegeKiryat OnoIsrael

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