Thursday, 11 October 2012

PhD Thesis: Social Enterprises and the Poor - Enhancing Social Entrepreneurship and Stakeholder Theory

Lisa Dacanay has just published her PhD thesis entitled "Social Enterprises and the Poor - Enhancing Social Entrepreneurship and Stakeholder Theory". This thesis develops a framework for understanding how social enterprises engage the poor and address poverty. Using case based theory building, it studies a theoretical sample of three pairs of Philippine-based social enterprises, where the poor were suppliers, workers, and customers. In half of the cases, the poor were also owners.

The research studies the roles and role changes of the poor in these social enterprises, how and why these roles changed, or did not change, and the impact of the roles and role changes, if any, on the social enterprises and the poor. Data for the research was gathered mainly from key informant interviews, published and unpublished organizational documents as well as previous studies done by external consultants on the case subjects.

Based on a cross case analysis of the data from the theoretical sample, the thesis develops three models of stakeholder engagement among social enterprises with the poor as primary stakeholders or SEPPS, namely: control, collaboration and empowerment. This thesis provides insights and develops propositions about the importance of stakeholder engagement and the power and limitations of these three models in bringing about social inclusion and poverty reduction.

These propositions are suggested to be applicable in countries in the South other than the Philippines where systemic poverty and inequality are exacerbated by the failure of state and market institutions to address the needs of the poor. This thesis makes a contribution to social entrepreneurship and stakeholder theory. It does so by sharing a perspective from the South and giving a voice to the poor as stakeholders. The researcher notes that overall, the poor and the South are under-represented in these discourses. On the whole, social entrepreneurship theorizing has been characterized as embryonic as a topic of academic inquiry. Stakeholder engagement is considered an under-theorized area in stakeholder theory. In developing a framework for understanding stakeholder engagement models involving the poor, this thesis makes a first step towards applying and extending stakeholder theory in SEPPS. The thesis likewise enriches social entrepreneurship theory by conceiving of SEPPS as a global social enterprise model that catalyzes South-North cooperation to address poverty and inequality.

Download the thesis here:

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Business Plan Ideas are online now

One month into the 2013 edition of the Copenhagen Business School (CBS) of the Minor in Social Entrepreneurship our elective "Business Plan Writing for Social Enterprises" now has 7 student teams working on business plan ideas. Feel free to connect with them if you think that you want to help them.

Here is a short overview of the seven business ideas, which will be developed and refined over the next 6 weeks:

1. develop business plan for a Norwegian social entrepreneurs who wants to help Indian widowed women through sales of fair trade yoga clothing

2. develop a business plan for a Danish designer who has developed a transport bike for low income people in developing country

3. develop business plan for distributing a Finish online education game aimed at illiterate children to developing countries

4. develop business plan for social impact assessment consulting platform in Denmark

5. develop business plan for a Danish events management start-up working on Climate change related events

6. develop business plan for marketing pop-up mosquito nets to Africa to prevent Malaria

7. raise funds for charities from private companies that need market information via a website on which people can volunteer to take market surveys.

You can read more on our Facebook page (see "recent posts by others") where the groups describe their ideas to their coaches: