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Distinctions not Dichotomies: Exploring Social, Sustainable, and Environmental Entrepreneurship

Social and Sustainable Entrepreneurship

ISBN: 978-1-78052-072-8, eISBN: 978-1-78052-073-5

Publication date: 22 July 2011


In this chapter, we review and examine the differences and similarities between social, sustainable, and environmental entrepreneurship. We explore the concepts, key questions, empirical methodologies, and disciplinary roots that differentiate and relate these emergent interest areas. The result of this comparative analysis inevitably raises the question of whether these new literature streams are inclusive or separate from the traditional domain of entrepreneurship research. We find that these three areas share many similarities, yet are distinguishable from one another and from more traditional, commercial forms of entrepreneurship. However, we determine that although these three areas of entrepreneurial scholarship raise unique questions and highlight different types of phenomena, they are not their own fields of study, but rather promising contexts for studying key questions of the entrepreneurship field.



Thompson, N., Kiefer, K. and York, J.G. (2011), "Distinctions not Dichotomies: Exploring Social, Sustainable, and Environmental Entrepreneurship", Lumpkin, G.T. and Katz, J.A. (Ed.) Social and Sustainable Entrepreneurship (Advances in Entrepreneurship, Firm Emergence and Growth, Vol. 13), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 201-229.



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