Human capital is known to be one of the most important predictors of a person's earnings. With regard to entrepreneurial success, founders' human capital is an important determinant of firm's employment growth as well. This paper investigates if the depreciation of a founder's academic knowledge affects a start-up's employment growth. The depreciation of academic knowledge is investigated by quantifying the effect of the time period which elapses after the founder has left university until the start-up is founded on firm's employment growth. Using quantile regressions, human capital depreciation is found to be of crucial importance for both ordinary academic start-ups and academic spin-offs, the founders of the latter suffering even more from human capital depreciation.
Human capital depreciation employment growth academic entrepreneurship