oa Journal of Contemporary Management - Generation Y university students’ intentions to become ecopreneurs : a gender comparison

Volume 17 Number Special Edition 1
  • ISSN : 1815-7440



Recently, the worsening state of the natural environment has caused researchers and practitioners to rethink the way in which this issue should be solved. It has been argued that the solution should not simply be one of regulation but rather of innovation. As such entrepreneurship, or more specifically ecopreneurship, has been identified as a possible avenue to bring about pro-environmental transformation within the business sector. To date however, research within the field of ecopreneurship is still lacking, especially within a developing country context, such as South Africa. In addition, most of the ecopreneurship data available do not report on gender differences. The purpose of this study was therefore to determine Generation Y students’ intentions towards becoming ecopreneurship within the context of South Africa, more specifically the Gauteng province, and to determine if any differences exist between male and female students. The study made use of primary data obtained through self-administered questionnaires that were distributed to 600 students across three (3) universities in South Africa. The variables used to determine student’s intentions to become ecopreneurs included environmental concern, environmental behaviour, perceived environmental knowledge, attitude towards ecopreneurship, perceived behavioural control, subjective norm and intention towards ecopreneurship. A combination of the judgement and convenience sampling techniques were used to identify the study sample. The statistical analysis used to analyse the collected data included, descriptive and reliability analysis and an independent sample t-test. The study found that students generally displayed positive intentions towards becoming ecopreneurs and that no significant difference was noted between male and female students regarding most of the previously mentioned variables. Female students did, however, record higher statistical means for environmental concern than male students.

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