Edited by Maritza I. Espina, Phillip H. Phan and Gideon D. Markman
Chapter 7: Social entrepreneurs and field-level change: an institutional process model of social entrepreneurship
In this chapter, we examine the processes of the ‘social innovation school’ of social entrepreneurs, who utilize their market-based and/or market-altering organization (i.e., social enterprise) as a mechanism to change organizational fields. We flip the traditional view of field-level change as a mechanism to organizational viability and growth, to consider organizations as a mechanism to field-level change. We explore and model: deliberate and emergent pathways to field-level change; field-level institutional assets that are generated through social enterprise business models; institutional thresholds; and unusual forms of coevolution between organizations and fields. Our research undergirds conceptions of social entrepreneurs as field-level institutional entrepreneurs and identifies a novel form of hybrid organization with both organization-serving and field-serving logics. Additionally, we integrate social enterprises’ ‘hard’ business models with ‘soft’ institutional processes to present a realistic view of multilevel institutional change.
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