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Malaysian Regulative Institutional Context Moderating Entrepreneurs’ Export Intention

Kim Hoe Looi and Jane Klobas ()

Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Emerging Economies, 2020, vol. 29, issue 2, 395-427

Abstract: Entrepreneurship is a multi-level phenomenon and it is important to investigate how antecedents at different levels interact to determine outcomes. Using multi-level contextualisation, this article examines how a country’s regulative institutional context affects small- and mediumsized entrepreneurs’ (SME) export intention. Institutional theory provides a lens for understanding how macro-level policy that supports one group of firms creates different micro-level contexts for decision-making. The theory of planned behaviour (TPB) provides a framework for comparing antecedents of export intention in different micro-level contexts. Data were gathered from 243 Malaysian SME entrepreneurs: 108 ethnic Malays (eligible for institutional support) and 135 ethnic Chinese (ineligible). Partial least squares estimated effects of antecedents on intention and multi-group analysis tested for differences between the path coefficients of ethnic Malay and ethnic Chinese SME entrepreneurs. Malaysia’s affirmative policy moderated decision-making process: ethnic Malay SME entrepreneurs are motivated to export by perceived control of actions and positive attitude; their Chinese counterparts are motivated to export by attitude alone. The findings suggest that desirability (attitude) and feasibility (perceived behavioural control) jointly predict SME entrepreneurs’ export intention in a munificent context, whereas desirability is the sole predictor in a penurious context.

Keywords: Small- and medium-sized enterprises; export intention; ethnic entrepreneurship; context; institutional theory; theory of planned behaviour; control (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1177/0971355720924900

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