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“ When I was in college, guys usually pretend they were in a band… Now they pretend they are in a start-up”  - Anonymous - 

Entrepreneurship is becoming an increasingly attractive employment option, not only for highly skilled and experienced individuals but also among young people, like university graduates. This is evidenced by the growing number of students who are looking at entrepreneurship as a realistic carrier option, with numerous examples of students creating their venture during university studies or soon after graduation, and by the rising demand for entrepreneurship education programs and entrepreneurship support structures at universities across the globe.

Research Objective and Methodology

This project aims to provide an in-depth analysis of students and graduates’ entrepreneurship in Italy. In particular, it collects primary and secondary data concerning the population of the Italian university graduates and their ventures, over the last twenty-years. The project is structured on two levels of analysis: 

1. Individual-level: Relying on almost the entire population of 3 million individuals, graduated from Italian universities over the last twenty-years, it analyses the individual characteristics of the graduates’ entrepreneurs.

2. Firm-level: It characterises the population of 250.000 Italian ventures created by graduates, identifying the main characteristics and impact of these ventures.


Azzurra Meoli

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