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Between Social Values and Profitable Performance: The Case of B-Corporations

Objective

How entrepreneurs could profit from social responsible investments? This issue implies a balance between entrepreneurs’ investments in profitable business models and their engagement in non-profit social actions. To address this question, the project studies the B-Corporations as a new legal business form of corporations (private and public) pursuing benefits for society and shareholders. A non-profit certifying organization, B-Lab, analyses the impact of these companies on society, with particular attention to their ability to provide to ‘communities’ beneficial products or services. Although first established in US, now they are present in 34 countries across 121 industries. Employing this legal form of social companies, the proposal exploits the notion of community-focused strategies (CFS) to refer to the actions that entrepreneurs should pursue to establish links with communities to fulfill reciprocal social values. If people join communities to satisfy their identity needs, entrepreneurs might seek to align their ventures’ strategy to them to improve entrepreneurial performance. Building on social identity theory, entrepreneurial and strategy research, this project adopt mainly a demand-oriented approach. First, it tries to explain differences in new ventures’ performance investigating how B-Corps interact with their communities and through them access customers’ information and gaining loyalty. Second, it explores and profiles the B-Corps as new examples of social entrepreneurial ventures. Finally, it studies entrepreneurs’ strategies to develop long-term interactions with the communities. The statistical evidence is drawn from secondary data, surveys to entrepreneurs, and lab experiments. Implications on ventures’ success rate, growth and drawbacks of the interplay between social entrepreneurship and CFS are discussed.

Field of science

  • /social sciences/economics and business/business and management/entrepreneurship

Call for proposal

H2020-MSCA-IF-2014
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

MSCA-IF-EF-ST - Standard EF

Coordinator

IE UNIVERSIDAD
Address
Calle Cardenal Zuniga 12
40003 Segovia
Spain
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 158 121,60