Mindsets Matter: a RCT Approach to Test if a Growth Mindset Intervention Can Be Leveraged to Foster Interest and Diversity in Entrepreneurship

Principal Investigator: Jeff Pollack

Sponsor: Kauffman Foundation

Award Period: 8/1/2017 - 12/3/2018

Amount: $51,000

Description: Women are grossly underrepresented in entrepreneurship, and each year the opportunity to develop millions of jobs in new ventures, globaly, is lost due to this gap. One reason for this under representation may be what psychologists term identity threat—a situation where an individual feels at risk of conforming to negative stereotypes about the social group to which they belong—which can serve as a psychological barrier. In this research the investigators suggest that the belief that entrepreneurs are made, not born, called a growth mindset can foster interest and skill development in entrepreneurship and can help females overcome identity threat. More specifically, the team is examining (a) developing an entrepreneurship education intervention that fosters growth mindsets, (b) using a randomized controlled design to test if the growth mindset intervention can increase career interest and performance in entrepreneurship, and (c) testing if it is especially beneficial for females.