The Entrepreneurship of the Good Samaritan: A Development Framework to Understand Social Entrepreneurship Using Insights from Qualitative Study
40 Pages Posted: 25 May 2006
Date Written: June 29, 2006
Traditional theories of entrepreneurship have been about risk-oriented profit-seeking individuals who identify market opportunities and exploit them to earn profits. Though useful to understand a large part of entrepreneurial activities in modern economies, the focus on profit as the underlying motive of entrepreneurs is not helpful in understanding the activities of social entrepreneurs. Social entrepreneurship refers to the creation of viable socio-economic structures, relations, institutions, organizations and practices that yield and sustain social benefits (Fowler, 2000). Extant entrepreneurship research offers little guidance to understand the motivations, mechanisms and outcomes that are central to social entrepreneurship. In this paper, we attempt to advance understanding in this area by developing a framework that is grounded in the theory of prosocial behavior and validated by field observations of social entrepreneurs in Western India. This framework of social entrepreneurship developed from grounded theory methods such as semi structured interviews and document analysis with social entrepreneurs from nine pioneering social organizations incorporates both behavioral as well as situational factors.
Keywords: social entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship, new social organizations, non-profit management
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