Social Entrepreneurship

ISBN: 978-1-80043-791-3, eISBN: 978-1-80043-790-6

ISSN: 2514-1759

Publication date: 24 November 2021


(2021), "Prelims", Wasieleski, D.M. and Weber, J. (Ed.) Social Entrepreneurship (Business and Society 360, Vol. 5), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. i-xxvi.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022 by Emerald Publishing Limited

Half Title Page

Social Entrepreneurship

Series Title Page

Business and Society 360

Series Editors: David M. Wasieleski and James Weber

Recent Volumes:

Volume 1: Stakeholder Management, 2017
Volume 2: Corporate Social Responsibility, 2018
Volume 3: Business Ethics, 2019
Volume 4: Sustainability, 2020

The Business and Society (BAS) 360 book series is an annual publication targeting cutting-edge developments in the broad business and society field, such as stakeholder management, corporate social responsibility and citizenship, business ethics, sustainability, corporate governance and others. Each volume will feature a comprehensive discussion and review of the current ‘state’ of the research and theoretical developments in a specific business and society area. As business and society is an inherently multi-disciplinary scholarly area, the book series will draw from work in areas outside of business and management, such as psychology, sociology, philosophy, religious studies, economics and other related fields, as well as the natural sciences, education and other professional areas of study.


This volume presents insightful case studies and adds important new knowledge to the social entrepreneurship conversation. It is well worth reading.

–Tom Lumpkin, Michael F. Price Chair and Professor of Entrepreneurship, University of Oklahoma

The chapters in this volume on social entrepreneurship offer readers an insightful and complex reflection on an emerging and increasingly important area of research to academics and practitioners. Various and unique insights are provided by expert international scholars and lay out intriguing pathways for future work that address gaps in the academic literature providing insights to business executives and academics.

–Gideon D. Markman, PhD, Professor of Strategy, Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Enterprise, Colorado State University

This year’s Business and Society 360 book series by Drs. Wasieleski and Weber are very timely. Their focus on social entrepreneurship is needed now more than ever. Not only is there a growing gap between the rich and the poor, but also the middle class continues to shrink. Traditional business models aren’t effectively addressing these complex problems. In far too many instances they are making them worse. Successful social entrepreneurship models and paradigms can help bridge those gaps.

–William Generett Jr., Esq., Senior Vice President, Duquesne University, Entrepreneur in Residence Duquesne School of Business and Social Entrepreneur

Title Page

Business and Society 360 Volume 5

Social Entrepreneurship

Edited by

David M. Wasieleski

Duquesne University, USA and ICN Business School, France


James Weber

Duquesne University, USA

United Kingdom – North America – Japan – India – Malaysia – China

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley BD16 1WA, UK

First edition 2022

Copyright © 2022 by Emerald Publishing Limited

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No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, transmitted in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without either the prior written permission of the publisher or a licence permitting restricted copying issued in the UK by The Copyright Licensing Agency and in the USA by The Copyright Clearance Center. Any opinions expressed in the chapters are those of the authors. Whilst Emerald makes every effort to ensure the quality and accuracy of its content, Emerald makes no representation implied or otherwise, as to the chapters' suitability and application and disclaims any warranties, express or implied, to their use.

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library

ISBN: 978-1-80043-791-3 (Print)

ISBN: 978-1-80043-790-6 (Online)

ISBN: 978-1-80043-792-0 (Epub)

ISSN: 2514-1759 (Series)

About the Editors

David M. Wasieleski (PhD, University of Pittsburgh) is the Albert P. Viragh Professor of Business Ethics in the Palumbo-Donahue School of Business at Duquesne University and the Executive Director of the Institute for Ethics in Business at Duquesne. David also is an Affiliate Research Professor at the ICN Business School in Nancy, France. His academic research focuses on natural science approaches to understanding ethical decision-making and the formation of social contracts within organizational contexts. He also studies the effects of cognitive biases and moral intensity on perceptions of ethical issues. His work has been published in Business & Society, Business Ethics Quarterly, Organization & Environment, Journal of Applied and Behavioral Sciences, and the Journal of Business Ethics. At Duquesne, he teaches business ethics, organizational behavior, management, and sustainability. Currently, David M. Wasieleski is the Editor-in-Chief of Business and Society Review.

James Weber is the Rev. Martin Hehir, C.S.Sp. Endowed Chair in Scholarly Excellence, and a Professor of Business Ethics and Management in the Palumbo-Donahue School of Business at Duquesne University. He is currently the Managing Director of the Institute of Ethics in Business at Duquesne University and Managing Editor of Business and Society Review. He received the Sumner Marcus award for outstanding contribution of service to the field in 2013 from the Academy of Management's SIM division. A prolific author with publications in major academic journals and co-author of a market-leading textbook, Dr. Weber also served on the editorial boards of Business Ethics: A European Review, Journal of Moral Psychology, International Journal of Ethics Education, Encyclopedia for Business Ethics and Society (SAGE Publications), and Business Ethics Quarterly.

About the Contributors

Jesús Asín-Lafuente, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Statistical Methods at the University of Saragossa (Spain). He teaches at the School of Engineering and Architecture. His research is based on the development of statistical methods to address environmental problems within the field of Engineering, as well as the analysis of databases related to social reality and social entrepreneurship.

James E. Austin is the Eliot I. Snider and Family Professor of Business Administration, Emeritus, at the Harvard Business School. He was the Co-Founder and Chairman of the HBS Social Enterprise Initiative. His doctorate and MBA degrees with distinction are from Harvard. His BBA with High Distinction is from the University of Michigan. He is widely published with over twenty books, dozens of articles, and hundreds of case studies. Professor Austin is recognized internationally as an expert on social enterprise, cross-sector collaboration, and management in developing countries.

Sophie Bacq, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship and Institute for Entrepreneurship & Competitive Enterprise Faculty Fellow at The Kelley School of Business, Indiana University. In her research, published in top-tier academic journals, she investigates and theorizes about entrepreneurial action aiming to solve intractable social and environmental problems at the individual, organizational, and civic levels of analysis. A widely recognized leading scholar in social entrepreneurship, Sophie has taught and conducted empirical research on social entrepreneurship in Europe, the United States, and South Africa. She is a Field Editor at the Journal of Business Venturing, and member of the Editorial Review Boards of the Academy of Management Journal, Entrepreneurship: Theory & Practice, and Journal of Management. Sophie enjoys assuming leadership roles at The Annual Social Entrepreneurship Conference, and teaching doctoral students at the Annual Social Entrepreneurship Doctoral Seminar.

Dr. Cyrine Ben-Hafaïedh is Associate Professor in Entrepreneurship & Strategy at IÉSEG School of Management and member of the LEM-CNRS research laboratory. She coordinates Social Entrepreneurship Master electives at IESEG (CREENSO in particular where students consult for social entrepreneurs). Her research focuses on collective entrepreneurship issues (e.g., entrepreneurial teams, collective governance, social entrepreneurship). Cyrine is a board member of the European Council for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ECSB).

Gabriel Berger is a Professor at the School of Business of Universidad de San Andrés (UdeSA, Argentina), and he is the Director of UdeSA’s Center of Social Innovation. He is a former Dean of UdeSA’s School of Business (2013-2017). His research, publications, and teaching activities focus on corporate social responsibility, impact business models, social enterprises, philanthropy, and nonprofit organization management. He is the Founding Director of the Graduate Program in Nonprofit Management at UdeSA, the first of its kind in Latam and has been a member of Social Enterprise Knowledge Network (SEKN) since its creation. He holds a PhD from the Heller School of Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University (USA).

Imran Chowdhury, PhD, is the Diana Davis Spencer Chair of Social Entrepreneurship and Associate Professor of Business & Management at Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts (USA). He teaches courses in entrepreneurship, strategic management, and international management, and conducts research at the intersection of business and society, encompassing domains such as social entrepreneurship and innovation, corporate social responsibility, philanthropy, and community-focused organizations. Imran serves on the Editorial Board of Academy of Management Learning & Education and is a Term Member at the Council on Foreign Relations. He received his PhD from L’Ecole supérieure des sciences économiques et commerciales (ESSEC Business School) in France.

Dr. Wendy Chen is an Assistant Professor at Texas Tech University. Her research focuses on social entrepreneurship and sustainability, impact investing, corporate philanthropy, and strategic management in nonprofits. She is also a Senior Associate Editor for the Management Decision journal where she bridges management theories and practices. Having worked in media, small businesses, multinational corporations, and nonprofits from around the globe, Wendy’s research also aims to provide actionable managerial and policy implications to improve organizational efficiency and to better our communities.

Nikolay A. Dentchev is Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship and Corporate Social Responsibility at Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium. He holds the Solvay Business School Chair of Social Entrepreneurship at VUB, and serves as an executive board member of the International Association for Business and Society, the International New Business Model Conference Series, and the Social Entrepreneurship Summit. Nikolay has (co)authored more than 45 scientific publications, realized in various indexed journals such as Business & Society, Journal of Business Ethics, and Business Ethics: A European Review. He serves as associate editor of Business and Society Review, and occasionally leads special issues in journals such as Business & Society and Journal of Cleaner Production.

Frédéric Dufays is an Organization scholar with an interest in atypical organizations: cooperatives, social enterprises, hybrid organizations. He currently coordinates the Centre of Expertise for Cooperative Entrepreneurship (Kenniscentrum voor Coöperatief Ondernemen) as an Assistant Professor at KU Leuven. His current research deals with the democratic governance of cooperatives and the framing of cooperatives in the public discourse.

Philippe Eiselein is a PhD Candidate at the Department of Business at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB). His doctoral dissertation focuses on the management of social Enterprises: scaling, conflicting objectives, and finance. His ongoing research has been presented at international conferences in Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Denmark, Hong Kong, the United States, and the Netherlands. He has actively supported the VUB Chair of Social Entrepreneurship as a coach, event organizer, and webmaster. His teaching activities cover the areas of (Social) Entrepreneurship and Project Management. Since 2019, he is the coordinator of Belgium Impact. This national platform acts as a catalysator of the Ecosystem and supports more than 300 inspiring and impactful social entrepreneurs.

Esperanza García-Uceda, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Business Management and Organization of the University of Saragossa (Spain). She teaches at the Faculty of Social Sciences and Work. The research field in which she works is developed within the framework of social entrepreneurship.

Peter T. Gianiodis is the inaugural holder of the Merle E. Gilliand Professorship in Entrepreneurial Finance. He received his PhD from the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia, and has spent the past 10 years at Clemson University. He researches at the intersection of entrepreneurship, technology management, and strategy. His scholarly work appears in the Academy of Management Review, Organization Science, Journal of Management Studies, Journal of Management, Journal of Business Venturing, Academy of Management Perspectives, and recently in the California Management Review. Dr. Gianiodis' research has explored market entry across several contexts, including new venture entry into mature markets, and technology commercialization from university start-ups. In addition to his scholarly work, he serves on the board of several journals, including the Academy of Management Perspectives. He has taught capstone courses in entrepreneurship and strategic management at both undergraduate and graduate students, as well as courses on innovation management.

Rosa Amelia González holds a PhD in Political Science from the Universidad Simón Bolívar and is a Full Professor at IESA, where she has also served as Academic Director. She has published academic articles on business ethics, the informing process occurring during case production and discussion, and inclusive business in journals such as the Journal of Education for Business, Informing Science: the International Journal of an Emerging Transdiscipline, and Harvard Business Review América Latina. She has also written several case studies dealing with contemporary challenges in corporate social responsibility, social enterprises, and inclusive business.

Jeffrey de Groot is an undergraduate student at Emory University studying Business Administration and Quantitative Sciences. He is interested in data analytics and its applications in business. Mr. de Groot is also a member of Emory’s varsity men’s swimming team and earned the College Swimming & Diving Coaches Association of America First Team Scholar All-America honors in the 2019–2020 season.

Roberto Gutiérrez, PhD in Sociology from Johns Hopkins University, is Associate Professor at the School of Management of Universidad de los Andes (Bogotá, Colombia) since 1995. Currently, Roberto is Editor of the CLADEA BALAS Case Consortium (CBCC). His articles have been published in the American Sociological Review, Review of Educational Research, Journal of Management Education, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Harvard Business Review Latin America, Journal of Business Ethics, Organization & Environment, Journal of Cleaner Production and Long Range Planning. Roberto has been a consultant for the Family Ministry in Nicaragua, the National Planning Department in Colombia, and different trade unions in other Latin American nations.

Burcin Kalabay Hatipoglu, PhD, is a Research Associate at the School of Business, Canberra, and Industrial Relations Research Group (IRRG), and Adjunct Lecturer at the School of Business, Sydney, the University of New South Wales (UNSW). She has worked on regional planning and development for 15 years, collaborating with small businesses and communities in less advantaged areas. Her research focuses on human capital, sustainable rural development, societal well-being, and women entrepreneurship.

Asiya K. Kazi is a Research Analyst in the Early Childhood Development area at Child Trends. She conducts research, provides technical assistance, and contributes to the design and evaluation of programs that address psychosocial determinants of health for children and families, including inequitable access to high-quality health care and child care, adverse childhood experiences, and early childhood education quality. Ms. Kazi’s interests focus on the interconnections between racial and ethnic inequality and mental health outcomes, as well as on the application of a trauma-responsive lens to health care provision. She completed an undergraduate degree in sociology with honors at Rice University and an MSPH from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in the Department of International Health with a concentration in Social and Behavioral Interventions.

Dr. Jill R. Kickul joined USC Marshall School of Business in August 2016 as a professor in the Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies and Narayan Research Director in the Brittingham Social Enterprise Lab. Before joining USC, she was the Director of the social entrepreneurship program at New York University Stern School of Business. Dr. Kickul has published more than 100 publications in entrepreneurship and management journals.

Iván D. Lobo has a PhD in Development Studies from University College London and an MSc in Social Policy and Planning from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He is an Assistant Professor at the School of Management of Universidad de los Andes (Bogotá, Colombia). His current research is focused on the political economy of socioenvironmental conflicts. Previous research and teaching focused on four interrelated areas: social and environmental enterprises, socially inclusive business models, intersectoral partnerships between businesses and civil society organizations, and business contributions to society. Alongside his research and teaching experience, he has also participated in consultancy projects in Colombia and abroad.

Karen Maas is Endowed Professor of Accounting and Sustainability at the Open University and Academic Director of Impact Centre Erasmus (ICE). Karen conducts research in the fields of impact measurement, sustainability, social enterprises, and impact investing. Karen worked with many for-profit, nonprofit, and financial organizations to measure their impact. Her work has been published in academic journals like Business & Society, Journal of Business Ethics, and American Journal of Evaluation, newspapers, and online sources. Karen is a board member of the International association of Business in Society (IABS) and Sustainable and Environmental Management Accounting Network (EMAN).

Dr. Paulami Mitra is an Assistant Professor in Innovation and Entrepreneurship at IESEG School of Management, France. She conducted her PhD in social entrepreneurship. She has published research articles and case studies that mainly focus on different dynamics of social entrepreneurship at the micro-, meso-, and macro levels. Apart from social entrepreneurship, her teaching and research interests include sustainable entrepreneurship, eco-entrepreneurship, social responsibility, gender, and crowdfunding.

Malcolm Muhammad is a native of Inkster, MI, alum of Florida A&M University, and current PhD student of Entrepreneurship in the College of Business at the University of Louisville. My research focuses on the environment that surrounds entrepreneurs, and how it helps them generate and grow their business ideas. He has strived to identify and leverage the value of an entrepreneurial community in my research and teaching, in practice with my family business, and in community work in the Louisville area. His research projects explore the specific role of a strong community in fostering entrepreneurship that enhances collective well-being. He focuses on interdependence and collaboration as mechanisms for change through entrepreneurship. He strives to develop this type of collaborative environment in the classroom as well. He currently teaches the introductory course to the entrepreneurship minor in the College of Business, Creativity & Innovation, where we cover the generation and refinement of business ideas. I encourage students to talk through their ideas and engage each other in classroom discussions to create new ideas together.

Josefina L. Murillo-Luna, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Business Management and Organization of the University of Saragossa (Spain). She teaches at the Faculty of Social Sciences and Work. The main research areas in which she works are related to the strategic environmental behavior of companies, corporate social responsibility, and social entrepreneurship.

Saheli Nath is an Assistant Professor of Management at the University of Central Oklahoma. She obtained her doctorate from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in the joint degree program in Management and Organizations and Sociology. Her primary research interests lie at the intersection of organizations and social problems. She has worked extensively on the different elements of a risk society that render certain groups and communities highly vulnerable to specific internal or environmental stressors. Applying a variety of theoretical perspectives, she has attempted to unpack the effectiveness of different interventions to address these vulnerabilities.

Michelle Ouimette is a Doctoral Student at Pace University’s Lubin School of Business Doctorate of Professional Studies in Management program. Her research interests include social entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial ecosystems, and entrepreneurial logics. She is also a Business Advisor for the Connecticut Small Business Development Center and Adjunct Faculty at the University of Connecticut. She teaches courses in entrepreneurship, management, and organizational behavior.

Dr. Colleen Robb currently serves as an Assistant Professor for Florida Gulf Coast University’s School of Entrepreneurship. Formerly, she was the Director for the Center for Entrepreneurship and an Assistant Professor of entrepreneurship for California State University, Chico (CSUC). She has taught entrepreneurship at multiple institutions since 2004. She has over fifteen years' experience working as a fundraising advisor to various start-ups in the athletic, cosmetic, manufacturing, nonprofit, retail, and technology sectors. She has nearly twenty years of experience in the nonprofit sector in various roles. Her research interests include social entrepreneurship, gender, entrepreneurial competencies, and innovation.

Tasneem Sadiq is Lecturer at the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and Doctoral Researcher (PhD student) at RSM Erasmus University Rotterdam. His main research focusses on understanding the hybrid nature of organizations in general and that of Social Enterprises in particular. Using an institutional approach, he investigates responses of hybrid organizations to institutional voids, and looks into the relationship between levels of problem complexity and categories of interventions.

Douglas A. Schuler is Associate Professor of Business and Public Policy at Rice University’s Jones School of Business. His primary scholarly and teaching activities focus upon corporate political activities, public policy, corporate social responsibility, and social entrepreneurship. Dr. Schuler serves as Associate Editor at Business & Society and is an editorial board member at Business & Society, Business Ethics Quarterly, and Business and Politics. He also is a former chair of the Social Issues in Management Division of the Academy of Management. With colleagues, Dr. Schuler wrote the 2019 Kinder Institute Report about food insecurity that has become a catalyst for the Health Equity Collective, a broad-based effort in Houston to link organizations to more effectively address food insecurity and other drivers of public health. He has a BS in Business Administration from the University of California at Berkeley and a PhD in Strategic Management and Organization from the University of Minnesota.

Rob van Tulder is Full Professor of International Business-Society Management at RSM Erasmus University Rotterdam and Academic Director of the Partnerships Resource Centre. He is cofounder of the department of Business-Society Management, one of the leading departments in the world organizing research and education on the way business can create value for society either alone or through cross-sector partnerships. He advises international organizations, governments, multinational enterprises, and international NGOs on issues of sustainability. His latest books include: Principles of Sustainable Business (2021); Getting all the motives right (2018; Skill Sheets: an integrated approach to research, study and management (2018).

Alfred Vernis is an Associate Professor at the Strategy Department and General Management at ESADE Business School (Ramon Llull University). His PhD is from the Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service at New York University (NYU). He is a member of the Center for Social Impact at ESADE and the Iberoamerican Social Enterprise Knowledge Network (SEKN). Previously he had founded the Momentum Project, Esade Alumni Social, Institute for Social Innovation, and the ESADE Courses for NGO Leadership. He has published several articles and books about public–private partnerships, nonprofit management, and social entrepreneurship.

Reginald Young is the Executive Director at the Alameda County Community Food Bank, an organization that passionately pursues a hunger-free community in Oakland and the East Bay in California. Mr. Young has over a decade of experience in food banking, including senior-level leadership positions at the Houston Food Bank, and is interested in developing strategies to address the fundamental causes and consequences of food insecurity. Previously, Feeding America selected Mr. Young to be in their first cohort of the Child Hunger Corps and subsequently he has served as an AmeriCorps VISTA member. Mr. Young is also a founding member of the Houston Food System Collaborative. He received a BA in Political Science from Millsaps College, an MA in Cross-Cultural Studies from the University of Houston-Clear Lake, and is currently pursuing an EdD in Organizational Leadership from Northeastern University.


Sophie Bacq, David M. Wasieleski and James Weber

Business and Society 360 Book Series Overview

Where are we? How did we get here? Which way should we go now?

Sound familiar? Have you ever considered the answers to these questions related to the work you do? Existential moments are common in the maturation of any academic discipline. They are the product of a passionate, caring constituency that is driven to make meaningful contributions that can propel future research and provide illusory discoveries that are conceptually powerful, empirically sound, and practically useful.

It is in the desire for academic progress that we proudly continue the Business and Society 360 (BAS 360) annual book series. BAS 360 is an annual book series targeting cutting-edge developments in the broad business and society field. Each volume features a comprehensive 360-degree discussion and review of the current state of the research and theoretical developments in a specific area of business and society scholarship. Our series began five years ago with Volume 1 on “Stakeholder Management.” Volume 2 was published a year later on “Corporate Social Responsibility.” In 2019, we focused Volume 3 on “Business Ethics” and last year we assembled Volume 4 focusing on “Sustainability.” The goal of this series is to shape future work in the field around our many disciplines and topics of interest, to enlighten scholars in the area about the most productive roads forward. Essentially, at this crossroad, which way do we proceed?

The 360-degree view is intended to reflect on a theory's cross-discipline research, empirical explorations, cross-cultural studies, literature critiques, and meta-analysis projects. Given our multidisciplinary identity, each volume draws from work in areas both inside and outside of business and management.

Social Entrepreneurship: Origins, Trends, and Future Directions

In 1972, Bill Drayton, founder of the international nonprofit Ashoka, coined the term social entrepreneurship to describe a then growing trend of entrepreneurs pursuing market-based opportunities in an attempt to address unresolved yet pressing social and environmental issues. These entrepreneurs noted that traditional state-led and charity efforts often struggle to tackle these challenges, in part because their top-down, bureaucratic, and somewhat arm-length structures and approaches often yield slow and suboptimal solutions. However, they also acknowledged that traditional profit-driven entrepreneurs, whose nimbler and more adaptable structures and approaches might yield superior solutions, tend to veer away from these sorts of issues because they do not see enough potential for financial gain in attempting to solve them. Social entrepreneurs aimed to address these actors' apparent shortcomings, respectively known as government and market failures, by applying traditional entrepreneurial structures and processes, while adopting state and nonprofit actors' focus on meeting others' needs over making profits – albeit while still striving to achieve economic sustainability as market-based ventures.

Over the following two decades, the social entrepreneurship ecosystem strengthened, as evidenced by the creation of other organizations promoting social entrepreneurs, including Echoing Green (est. 1987), the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship (est. 1998), the Skoll Foundation (est. 1999), to name just a few. As social entrepreneurship gained visibility and traction among practitioners, it triggered a wave of academic analyses of the concept, marked by a sharp increase in research and publications over the last decade. Initially, researchers examined the individual motives that appeared to lead some entrepreneurs down a social, and others down a more traditional, path (e.g., Bacq & Janssen, 2011; Dees, 1998; Mair & Marti, 2006). They then shifted their focus to the strategies social entrepreneurs use to balance the tensions between their economic and noneconomic goals in their organizations (e.g., Battilana & Lee, 2014), largely in response to external institutional and resource provider pressures (Saebi, Foss, & Linder, 2019). In contrast to individual motives and organizational processes, to date, few researchers have examined the outcomes of social entrepreneurship – that is, which social entrepreneurial solutions appear to work in a given context and which do not. As a result, extant research has yet to inform researchers or practitioners of whether or under which conditions social entrepreneurship actually yields more or more meaningful social benefits than traditional state, NGO, or entrepreneurial initiatives (Bacq & Lumpkin, 2021).

This research gap stems at least in part from the reality that social entrepreneurship outcomes are uniquely difficult to measure. While traditional ventures usually evaluate success by means of one metric – typically net profits – social enterprises by nature often monitor multiple metrics simultaneously, many of which are far less tangible or precise than financial capital. In fact, many develop dashboards showing dozens of metrics to assess their success, and practitioners and funders have developed hundreds of tools and frameworks for measuring and presenting them (IssueLab, 2021). 1 Specific metrics of interest also frequently vary from one context to another, over time, and even between two ventures operating in the same general space, based upon their individual missions and/or approaches (Hertel, Bacq, & Lumpkin, Forthcoming).

As social entrepreneurship often attempts to create value for distinct local communities (Lumpkin, Bacq, & Pidduck, 2018), recent research has attempted to measure a given venture's outcomes from the perspective of the specific group or groups it seeks to serve. This approach has led researchers to conceptualize new overarching and fungible metrics, including but not limited to civic wealth (Lumpkin & Bacq, 2019); community resilience (Dutta, 2017; Gray, Duncan, Kirkwood, & Walton, 2014; Williams & Shepherd, 2016); community development, regeneration, and renewal (Haugh, 2007; Jain & Koch, 2020); and community well-being (Gordon, Wilson, Tonner, & Shaw, 2018; Vestrum, 2014). Adopting a broader conceptualization of wealth, beyond economic terms, and examining social entrepreneurship outcomes in terms of stocks and flows of capital, offers avenues for future research that complements the currently heavy focus on inputs and organizational processes.

Most social enterprises form with the goal of eventually expanding their operations beyond an initial community of focus, as the issues they aim to address are ultimately global concerns. As such, social entrepreneurs and their supporters – like traditional entrepreneurs – also tend to measure their success in terms of their ability to scale up their solutions. Indeed, as any entrepreneurial ventures, social enterprises start small, yet the problems they intend to solve are large, from poverty to climate change to biodiversity loss. Understandingly, scale has been the center of attention for many social entrepreneurs and their supporters, and we are witnessing a social entrepreneurship ecosystem built on expectations of scale. But while traditional ventures often measure this facet of success in terms of organizational size, organizational scaling does not guarantee scaling of social impact. Rather, and reminiscent of the multidimensionality of impact, scale can take many forms. Social enterprises can scale their impact, either by increasing the number of people they serve – such “scale breadth” strategy has been adopted by many microfinance organizations that have made their purpose to increase the number of borrowers they serve – or by improving their services to beneficiaries, known as “scale depth” (Desa & Koch, 2014).

Furthermore, many practitioners, and a small but growing body of researchers (e.g., Bansal, Grewatsch, & Sharma, 2021), recognize that the ability of social enterprises to scale in any meaningful respect is often a function of their ability to overcome systemic barriers to their efforts, and foster supportive ecosystems, through interactions with local activists, communities, corporations, governments, and other actors (Lumpkin & Bacq, 2019) – a process often conceptualized as systems change (Papi-Thornton, 2019). Such a systems approach implies for social entrepreneurship researchers to acknowledge and (re)connect social entrepreneurs and organizations to the other actors in the system – not only supporters and communities but also governments, activists, and large corporations – when evaluating the outcomes of social entrepreneurship. A measure of success, in this case, would then be the extent of change (e.g., in power dynamics, in voice representation) brought to existing institutions following social entrepreneurial action.

These existing lines of research demonstrate the importance – and unique opportunity – for social entrepreneurship researchers to challenge assumptions drawn from traditional entrepreneurship and management theories. Such opportunities abound. Let us illustrate with the case of stakeholder theory, an organizational management, and business ethics theory that accounts for multiple constituencies impacted by business entities like employees, suppliers, local communities, and funders can inform our understandings of this subject. Since it rose to prominence in the 1980s following R. Edward Freeman's publication of his landmark book “Strategic Management: A Stakeholder Approach” in 1984, explorations of this theory have focused on how a given focal organization can improve its outcomes by accounting for the needs and views of multiple actors its activities affect. The centeredness of the focal organization has been the assumption since the theory became in vogue in the 1980s. However, the complexity of social and environmental issues invites us to consider how multiple distinct actors' actions can combine to create value and improve outcomes within a given space – drawing upon theories of commons (Ostrom, 1990) to conceptualize this complexity and address collaboration dilemma among multiple stakeholders. To wit, the concept of the commons itself has been revisited and reinterpreted in management, in recent special issues (e.g., Peredo, Haugh, Hudon, & Meyer, 2020) and theory pieces (e.g., Bridoux and Stoelhorst, 2020). As such, in a concerted effort to push scholarly understanding of impact, who gets what value, and on which basis value is allocated (Bacq & Aguilera, 2021; Klein, Mahoney, McGahan, & Pitelis, 2019), this volume brings the spirit of critical and multipolar thought forward by examining social entrepreneurship through the lenses of international collaboration, complexity, and scaling. This volume's coverage of both established and emerging topics, such as networks, crowdfunding, and teams, makes it a rich source of inspiration for anyone interested in researching social entrepreneurship.

Volume 5 is organized into three sections that represent the work included therein. The first part, Case Studies, features five chapters that utilize a case study methodology examining diverse aspects of social entrepreneurship and community issues. Chapter 1, “Generating Social Entrepreneurship Knowledge: International Research Collaboration on a Hemispheric Level” is presented by James E. Austin, Gabriel Berger, Rosa Amelia González, Roberto Gutiérrez, Ivan Lobo, and Alfred Vernis. In this unique piece, the co-authors examine social entrepreneurship knowledge created by universities to improve how a particular knowledge network can facilitate the transfer of knowledge. Looking back over 20 years, the research team provides a model for evaluating the impact of knowledge networks.

Chapter 2, “Social Venture Scaling in Distressed Communities,” written by Peter T. Gianiodis, Malcolm Muhammad, and Wendy Chen, examines venturing in communities with limited economic potential. This chapter explores an important gap in the social entrepreneurship literature with its focus on the venture growth and expansion stages in distressed economic areas. Using a case study illustration, the authors present venture scaling challenges in these communities and offer ways economic development can occur in the face of limited economic opportunity.

In “Social Entrepreneurship and Nonprofit Management: Negotiating Institutional Complexity,” Michelle Ouimette, Imran Chowdhury, and Jill R. Kickul examine two nonprofit cases to understand how this type of organization pursues social entrepreneurial ventures while adhering to the parent firm's social welfare logic. Their study reveals a divergence between parent nonprofit organizations and subsidiary social enterprise in terms of identity and legitimacy. They offer valuable implications on how nonprofits may deal with the dissonance of logic between the values and mission of the parent firm and their seeking of revenue-generating activities.

In Chapter 4, Douglas Schuler, Reginald Young, Asiya Kari, and Jeffrey de Groot examine a case of social entrepreneurship in the food sector. In “Addressing the Interlinkages of Persistent Social Problems: Food for Change as Social Entrepreneurship,” the authors examine an innovating social program from the food bank in Houston, Texas. This fascinating example illustrates how food insecurity is influenced by multiple factors in society. They offer valuable lessons about clients and partners for addressing the causes of social problems.

The final chapter in this section is entitled “Community-based Social Enterprises and Social Innovation: The Case of Women's Cooperatives in Turkey.” Burin Kalabay Hatipoglu takes us on a deep analysis of a new program associated with a social entrepreneurial organization in Turkey. Examining refugee women's empowerment, the author finds ways the cooperative can be more inclusive and provide a greater community impact through social innovation. The chapter ends with important implications for society that can be generalized to other community-based social enterprises.

Part 2 focuses on the theoretical development of the field, a topic that is also highlighted in our Preface. Chapter 6, written by Tasneem Sadiq, Karen Maas, and Rob van Tulder, looks at challenges manifested from a hybrid model of an organization. In “The Impact of the Hybridization Movement on Organizations and Society,” the authors utilize a hybridization taxonomy to better understand what challenges to expect in a hybrid characterization of organization. They find that challenges differ by type of hybrid organization and offer suggestions for how each type can address those issues.

In “Scaling Social Impact: What Challenges and Opportunities Await Social Entrepreneurs,” Philippe Eiselein and Nikolai Dentchev examine the theoretical background of scaling challenges and opportunities for social entrepreneurs. They provide a detailed and thorough literature review to identify both challenges facing the entrepreneurs and different strategies that can be taken to address those scaling issues. The chapter offers many forward-looking avenues for future research in this area.

Chapter 8, by Cyrine Ben-Hafaiedh and Frederic Dufays, establishes a forward-seeking agenda for social entrepreneurial teams' research. In “Social Entrepreneurial Teams: A Research Agenda,” they address a gap in entrepreneurial research by exploring work that has been done in collective dynamics of socially innovative teams. This underresearched area is an important component of social entrepreneurship scholarship. After their review, the author proffers six topic areas of study for future work in social entrepreneurial teams.

Finally, in Part 3, the remaining three chapters of the volume examine applied research in social entrepreneurship. In Chapter 9, Josefina Murillo-Luna, Esperanza Garcia-Uceda, and Jesus Asin-Lafuente introduce “Obstacles to Social Entrepreneurship.” The team presents a 360-degree view of the factors that inhibit social entrepreneurship as a business model. Their exploratory analysis identifies the key obstacles that hold back social entrepreneurship in this regard. Their chapter also features a set of recommendations from experts in social entrepreneurship to overcome these barriers.

Saheli Nath conceives social entrepreneurship in a different manner in his chapter, “Social Entrepreneurship as ‘Acts of Solidarity’ in Disasters.” In the context of global disasters, Nath proposes thinking of social enterprise as a function of solidarity in order to discover novel patterns of social interaction and to increase inclusivity. She argues that this new vision allows for more community resilience and cohesion in the wake of natural disasters.

Our volume concludes with Chapter 11 entitled “Helper Networks and Crowdfunding: Mobilizing Social Entrepreneurship.” Paulami Mitra, Jill R. Kickul, and Colleen Robb examine crowdfunding in the context of social entrepreneurship to understand what motivates a network of individuals to engage in this behavior. The authors provide insights into the characteristics of these individuals to see what makes these groups unique. Lessons for social entrepreneurs are offered on the formation of their networks as well as communication strategies for engaging in crowdfunding.

In the spirit of this book series, this ensemble of chapters captures the essence of some of the most important and cutting-edge research in social entrepreneurship. Our distinguished group of authors gives a critical examination of the work done in this area, identifies gaps in the extant literature, elucidates pathways for future research, and offers practical and theoretical implications for the field.



This observation is drawn from the records of conversations between the first author and multiple social enterprises.


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The BAS 360 book series is supported by the International Association for Business and Society (IABS). IABS is the premier international professional association of more than 300 educators from over 20 countries researching and teaching on the relationships between business, government and society, sustainability, and business ethics. In addition, there is support from the Palumbo-Donahue School of Business at Duquesne University, which has been recognized by Corporate Knights in its 2018 Better World MBA Ranking. Among the 40 schools listed, the University's MBA Sustainable Business Practices program is ranked No. 5 nationally and No. 13 internationally. Duquesne is also one of the first 100 signatories of the United Nation's Global Compact Principles for Responsible Management education. Finally, the co-editors of BAS 360 acknowledge and thank Mr. Gene Beard for his financial support provided through the Eugene P. Beard Faculty Resource Fund in Ethics at Duquesne University. We also express our gratitude to the Albert P. Viragh donors to Duquesne's Institute for Ethics in Business for their financial and moral support for this endeavor.