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NOTE: Since 2009 the title of the International Journal of Entrepreneurship Education (IJEE) has been changed to the title above.  ISSN numbers: IJEE 1649-2269 and IRE 2009-2822

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ISSN Number: 2009-2822. Frequency: 4 Issues per year (online only)  

#1575 - Self-Employment and its Relationship to Subjective Well-Being

IRE Vol 16: Issue 1, 2018 , Pages 115-140

Author(s): Aycan Kara (Indiana University Southeast, School of Business, New Albany, USA) and Maria Petrescu (Nova Southeastern University, H. Wayne Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship, Florida, USA)

The subjective well-being of self-employed people has not received adequate attention. Our analysis focuses on how individuals’ universal needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness affect the happiness of self-employed persons, including whether there are significant differences among solo self-employed and those with employees. We use Self-Determination Theory and Hofstede’s culture theory to address this gap. We study the relationship between autonomy, competence, relatedness and subjective well-being of self-employed people as well as the moderating effects of national cultural dimensions. We examine these hypothesized relationships using Hierarchical Linear Modelling across 4,856 self-employed individuals in 27 countries. Our results indicate that autonomy, competence, and relatedness are positively associated with the subjective well-being of self-employed individuals. Individualism moderates the relationship between autonomy and subjective well-being negatively and Uncertainty Avoidance moderates the relationship between relatedness and subjective well-being negatively. The findings represent a step forward in entrepreneurship research by examining the well-being of self-employed individuals. The study also provides information policymakers can utilize to encourage entrepreneurship using well-being as a motivational tool. Nevertheless, entrepreneurs can use these findings in formulating their long-term plans and business structure, as well as in motivating their employees.

Keywords: self-employment, subjective well-being, Self-Determination Theory (STD), national culture, Hofstede

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