Surveying Social Entrepreneurship

Viewpoints, pp. 12-38, 2004

14 Pages Posted: 2 Jan 2009

Date Written: December 1, 2004


Excerpted from widely read "Surveying Social Entrepreneurship" (which was first circulated in summer of 2003 and later published at the University of St. Gallen in 2004, here abridged for publication in Viewpoints 2004), this paper reviews social entrepreneurship as a specific form of intervention in domains where market mechanisms alone do not work properly, and analyzes the business case for social entrepreneurship. Section 1 provides a brief overview of social entrepreneurship and its logic of action. Taking a structured perspective, one can establish a continuum ranging from an exclusive focus on social entrepreneurs' traits and patterns of behavior to a complete focus on context. The emerging schools of thought on social entrepreneurship are best classified as the individualist and the contextualist views. Section 2 clarifies four dimensions of social entrepreneurship that warrant empirical validation: innovation, performance, leadership, and identity. Section 3 concludes, looking into the future of social entrepreneurship.

Keywords: Social entrepreneurship, non-profit sector

JEL Classification: B29, H41, I39, L31, M13, M14

Suggested Citation

Martin, Maximilian, Surveying Social Entrepreneurship (December 1, 2004). Viewpoints, pp. 12-38, 2004, Available at SSRN:

Maximilian Martin (Contact Author)

University of St. Gallen ( email )

Tigerbergstrasse 2
St. Gallen, CH-9000

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics