Dissertation Abstracts

Socio-cultural Factors and Entrepreneurial Behaviour in Kwara State.

Author: Olatunji, Abdulganiy , olatunji.ag@unilorin.edu.ng
Department: Sociology
University: University of Ilorin, Nigeria
Supervisor: Prof. Noah Yusuf
Year of completion: 2015
Language of dissertation: English

Keywords: Entreprenurship , Behaviour , Sociology , Economic-Sociology
Areas of Research: Economy and Society , Social Movements, Collective Action and Social Change , Risk and Uncertainty


Nigeria, though one of the richest countries in Africa is rated one of the poorest in the world, with more than 70 per cent of the total population living in abject poverty and 24.4 per cent rate of unemployment in 2015. Consequently, the country is seen today as a developing economy. At the beginning, development has been linked with the activities of ancient entrepreneurs as evident in the history of Jews, Arabs, English and African societies where they acted as agents of change, growth and innovation. Nigeria with her abundant resources, but dominated by small and medium scale business enterprises, requires people with positive entrepreneurial traits to facilitate her development. The study therefore investigated the influence of socio-cultural factors on entrepreneurial behaviour in Kwara State, Nigeria. The specific objectives were to: (i) identify the social and cultural characteristics of the operators of business enterprises; (ii) examine the entrepreneurial behaviour exhibited by the respondents; and (iii) assess the influence of socio-cultural factors on entrepreneurial behaviour of the operators of business enterprises.
Survey design was adopted to achieve the objectives of the study. Quantitative and qualitative data for the study were generated respectively through the use of questionnaire and Focus Group Discussions (FGDs). Using a multi-stage sampling technique, a total of 1,480 operators of small and medium scale business enterprises drawn from six Local Government Areas in Kwara State were selected as sample for the study. Forty-seven operators of business enterprises participated in the FGDs sessions. Frequency Distribution and Multiple response analysis were used to ascertain the distribution of the socio-cultural and behavioural attributes of the respondents while multiple regression analysis was used to determine the effect of socio-cultural factors on the identified entrepreneurial behaviour of the respondents all at 0.05 level of significance. Integrated Social Learning (ISL) model was adopted as the explanatory tool.

The findings of the study were that:
(i) the sampled entrepreneurs were predominantly male (69%); aged between 26-50 years (74%); belonged to Christian faith (50.07%); holders of SSCE certificate (33.80%); of Igbo tribe (45.71%) and operate retail businesses (60.50%);
(ii) the predominant entrepreneurial behaviour exhibited by the respondents were: risk taking propensity (81.8%); internal locus of control (78.8%); opportunity recognition (75.8%); high achievement orientation (69.6%) and innovation (61.5%);
(iii) the determinants of entrepreneurial behaviour of operators of business enterprises were: family background (R2 = 0.856), social capital (R2 = 0.898) cultural conception of work (R2 = 0.981); and
(iv) there is an inverse relationship between educational qualification and achievement orientation (r = - 0.502) and also between belief in spirituality and innovation (r = -0.022) all at 5% level of significance
The study concluded that socio-cultural factors such as family background, education, social capital and cultural conception of work were important factors influencing entrepreneurial behaviour. The study recommended that socio-cultural factors such as educational background, social capital, belief in spirituality should be seen as important factors needed to be given utmost consideration by relevant stakeholders in order to achieve viable entrepreneurial development in Kwara State, Nigeria.

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