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Social Entrepreneurship Theory and Research: Where Do We Go from Here?


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1 Managing Director, Suman Trades Pvt. Ltd., Surat, India
     

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There has been a significant increase in scholarly interest in the field of “Social Entrepreneurship” since the advent of 21st century. The field is still in development stage, and conceptual and theoretical research largely dominated this field. A more rigorous and formal research for theory development, followed by validation is required to develop consensus on the boundaries of this research field. The present study proposes to analyze the research journey so far to identify if conceptual consensus can be constructed from the literature and what could be the future research areas. A sample of 549 research papers was drawn from sampling frame of four sources comprising of two publication groups namely, Sage Publications and Emerald Insight, and two online scholarly databases namely JSTOR and Google Scholar. It attempts to examine if a broader consensus can be derived on the definitions of the key terms of this research field. The inclusion of social and environmental benefits and their impact may be needed in the conceptual frameworks to make them relevant for social entrepreneurship. The researchers’ focus should be beyond the concepts and theories in this field to take it further with development of meaningful theories and models related to social entrepreneurship and ways to validate them.

Keywords

Social Entrepreneurship, Conceptual Framework, Models, Research.
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  • Social Entrepreneurship Theory and Research: Where Do We Go from Here?

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Authors

Manishkumar S. Patel
Managing Director, Suman Trades Pvt. Ltd., Surat, India

Abstract


There has been a significant increase in scholarly interest in the field of “Social Entrepreneurship” since the advent of 21st century. The field is still in development stage, and conceptual and theoretical research largely dominated this field. A more rigorous and formal research for theory development, followed by validation is required to develop consensus on the boundaries of this research field. The present study proposes to analyze the research journey so far to identify if conceptual consensus can be constructed from the literature and what could be the future research areas. A sample of 549 research papers was drawn from sampling frame of four sources comprising of two publication groups namely, Sage Publications and Emerald Insight, and two online scholarly databases namely JSTOR and Google Scholar. It attempts to examine if a broader consensus can be derived on the definitions of the key terms of this research field. The inclusion of social and environmental benefits and their impact may be needed in the conceptual frameworks to make them relevant for social entrepreneurship. The researchers’ focus should be beyond the concepts and theories in this field to take it further with development of meaningful theories and models related to social entrepreneurship and ways to validate them.

Keywords


Social Entrepreneurship, Conceptual Framework, Models, Research.