Repository logo

The entrepreneurial orientation and intention of UKZN MBA students.

Thumbnail Image



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



Abstract The global economy is in a state of uncertainty and not forecasted to grow at a rate that will realise economic prosperity for all. Entrepreneurship is recognised as a potential remedy to this problem as it is posited to offer stimulus to economic growth. However the actualisation levels of entrepreneurial activity has been low, especially in South Africa. MBA students are identified as a segment of the population that can stimulate entrepreneurial activity since the tendency to pursue entrepreneurship is positively correlated with maturity, education, experience and corporate exposure. This study examines the entrepreneurship profile of the 2012 cohort of MBA students enrolled at the University of Kwa-zulu Natal (UKZN). There is no evidence of a study of this nature having been conducted at UKZN and as such the study represents new research. By evaluating the entrepreneurship profile of the MBA students the study seeks to identify how the actualisation of entrepreneurship may be enhanced. The entrepreneurship profile of the students is established by measuring the extent of Entrepreneurial Intention (EI) and Entrepreneurial Orientation (EO). Both EI and EO impact on the likelihood of entrepreneurial actualisation. A census survey is administered to evaluate EO (as measured by self-efficacy) and EI (as measured by the dimensions of risk-taking, innovativeness and proactivity). Statistical analysis reveals high levels of EO and EI and strong correlations between the two factors. Variances in EI are accounted for by the dimensions of risktaking, innovativeness and proactivity. Proactivity is found to be the best predictor of EI followed by innovativeness and risk-taking. No significant differences are noted in gender, age, race and entrepreneurial awareness. The study benefits students and organisations as it provides an assessment of the likelihood of entrepreneurial actualisation, which is a source of competitiveness and economic prosperity. UKZN benefits from the creation of a benchmark study for future research on evaluating the propensity of students to engage in entrepreneurial activity. In addition to high EI and EO, the study identifies that external factors in the environment, the preparation of individuals for entrepreneurship and the availability of entrepreneurial opportunities positively impact on the actualisation of entrepreneurship. Consequently UKZN, local industry and government must devise strategies that positively influence these factors in order to stimulate entrepreneurial activity.


Master’s Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.