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Evaluation of social enterprise outcomes and self-efficacy

Boris Urban (Graduate School of Business Administration, University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.)

International Journal of Social Economics

ISSN: 0306-8293

Article publication date: 9 February 2015




Understanding of social values is emerging, particularly as the phrases “social impact” and “social value” and the measurement thereof, are ubiquitous in both practitioner and academic discourse today. These terms are particularly relevant to those involved in social initiatives that are required at some stage to demonstrate to stakeholders, investors, funders, or simply themselves that they have the capability to deliver. The purpose of this paper is to link the evaluation of social enterprise outcomes to individual efficacy beliefs.


The study is survey based (165 respondents) and conducted in two major cities in South Africa, where social entrepreneurship (SE) has unequivocal application. Social outcomes and self-efficacy are operationalized and measured along multi-dimensional scales. After checking the instruments for validity and reliability, correlational and multiple regression analyses are performed to determine the predicted relationship between the specified variables.


Empirical findings reveal that evaluation of social enterprise outcomes is associated with higher levels of self-efficacy. Significant results support the propositions that perceptions of capability are positively related to implementing a social vision, sustainability, social networking, innovativeness and financial returns.

Research limitations/implications

The main implications of this study are that measuring SE efficacy in advance of funding may indicate probability of venture success.


The study is one of the first to provide a much needed account of the evaluation of social enterprises in relation to self-efficacy in an emerging market context.



Urban, B. (2015), "Evaluation of social enterprise outcomes and self-efficacy", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 42 No. 2, pp. 163-178.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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