Social capital impact on entrepreneur’s innovation: A test of Chinese entrepreneurs in Italy


According to the theory of Burt (2005), brokerage and closure are two main feature of social network and metaphor of social capital. The purpose of this research was to investigate how immigrate entrepreneur’s social network may affect entrepreneur’s innovation. The relationship between social capital and entrepreneur’s innovation can be mediated by trust and information diversity. These relationships are especially relevant in the case of immigrant entrepreneurs, which function in multiple groups and networks. The hypothesised relationship were examined with data from 91 Chinese entrepreneurs in Italy (Rome, Milan, Venice and Florence). This research aimed to prove the relationship between entrepreneur’s social network and innovation. This research distinguish two types of social network which are closure and structural hole, and two components of social capital which are trust and sharing diversity information. Through applying Burt’s theory about types of social network and dimensions of social capital, it show the two types of entrepreneur’s social network is all positively associated with innovation. The obtained results confirm prior hypothesis. The value added of this research is an indication that in the case of immigrant entrepreneurs social capital which derives from social networks positively impacts entrepreneur’s innovation.


social capital; trust; tacit knowledge; innovation; Chinese entrepreneur

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Published : 2016-10-19

Zhou, Y. (2016). Social capital impact on entrepreneur’s innovation: A test of Chinese entrepreneurs in Italy. International Entrepreneurship Review, 2(2), 109-119. Retrieved from

Yuhong Zhou
University of Rome  Italy

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