Social Entrepreneurship


Social Entrepreneurship

An Affirmative Critique

9781783474110 Edward Elgar Publishing
Edited by Pascal Dey, Bern University of Applied Sciences and Chris Steyaert, Doctor in Psychology and Professor in Organizational Psychology, University of St. Gallen, Switzerland
Publication Date: 2018 ISBN: 978 1 78347 411 0 Extent: 328 pp
Pascal Dey and Chris Steyaert provide a timely critique on the idea of social entrepreneurship and its reputation as a means for positive social change. The book uses different traditions and modes of critique to interrogate, disrupt and reimagine the concept of social entrepreneurship.

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Pascal Dey and Chris Steyaert provide a timely critique on the idea of social entrepreneurship and its reputation as a means for positive social change. The book uses different traditions and modes of critique to interrogate, disrupt and reimagine the concept of social entrepreneurship.

Presented in five parts, each individual contribution uses a different critical perspective to analyse and assess social entrepreneurship in its mythological, ideological and performative constitution, looking for its democratic possibilities and alternative affirmations. Using varied analytical approaches, the resulting work highlights the need for a greater recognition of the unintended effects of social entrepreneurship and in doing so, adds nuance to a concept that has gone relatively unchallenged. In addition, each chapter identifies intriguing points for further research.

Scholars in the fields of social entrepreneurship, management and organizational studies will find this a relevant and insightful work. Those with a wider scholarly interest in critical research, particularly in the humanities or social sciences, will also find the critical approaches compelling.
Critical Acclaim
‘Pascal Dey and Chris Steyaert have composed a conceptual assemblage that problematizes "social entrepreneurship" and opens up a space for transforming our understanding of what it means to engage in social transformation. The affirmative critique neither accepts what is given, nor simply rejects it. The chapters in Social Entrepreneurship instead invite us to explore the limits of our capitalist understanding of "social entrepreneurship" and inspire us to reinvent it as a space and practice of potential transformation in the context of democracy and our responsibilities in the Anthropocene.’
– Richard Weiskopf, University of Innsbruck, Austria

‘This is a pioneering book for anyone who wants to make sense of what entrepreneurship is (not just social entrepreneurship) as a phenomenon and as a field of study. So, while the book is ostensibly about social entrepreneurship – all entrepreneurship is inherently social – and, therefore, while the book offers various insightful and critical assessments of social entrepreneurship (as myth, ideology, politic, power, enacted, participated, related and possible – just a few of the categories explored), it also garners enlightening discernment across all aspects of entrepreneurship, itself. A much needed reflection that would be very valuable for all entrepreneurship scholars.’
– William B. Gartner, Babson College, US

‘This book will surprise you! And it will keep surprising you chapter after chapter for its diversity, insight and wit. The book exemplifies the work of critique as a creative practice and illustrates the ways in which social entrepreneurship as a category of thought is instituted, and how it is ordered as a field of knowledge. The authors pay close attention to the intricate ways in which social entrepreneurship is enacted as a phenomenon that is brought into existence, is constantly changing and constitutes an ongoing social practice.’
– Silvia Gherardi, University of Trento, Italy
Contributors: K. Berglund, M.B. Calás, J. Cameron, R. Dart, P. Dey, A.M. Eikenberry, S. Ergene, V.J. Friedman, D.M. Horn, J.A. Kerlin, F. Lyon, C. Mason, S. Mauksch, M. Moran, R. Owen (Baldock), L. Perren, T.H. Pollak, T. Ruebottom, P. Seanor, L. Smircich, C. Steyaert, M. Strauch, I. Sykes, S. Teasdale


1. The books on social entrepreneurship we edit, critique and imagine
Chris Steyaert and Pascal Dey

Part I Social Entrepreneurship, political representation and myth-busting
2. A methodological critique of the social enterprise growth myth
Simon Teasdale, Fergus Lyon and Robyn Owen (Baldock)

3. Nonprofit commercial revenue: A replacement for declining government grants and private contributions?
Janelle A. Kerlin and Tom H. Pollak

4. Bursting the bubble: The mythologies of many social enterprises and enterpri$ing nonprofits
Raymond Dart

Part II Social entrepreneurship, ideology and power effects
5. The tale of the veil: Unweaving Big Society and the social enterprise myth
Chris Mason and Michael Moran

6. Myth in social entrepreneurship research: An inquiry into rationalist, ideological and dialectic practices of demystification
Pascal Dey and Chris Steyaert

7. Social entrepreneurship: Mythological ‘doublethink’
Lew Perren

Part III Social entrepreneurship and its enactments
8. ‘(It) is exactly what it was in me’ – The performativity of social entrepreneurship
Stefanie Mauksch

9. Of course, trust is not the whole story: Narratives of dancing with a critical friend in social enterprise-public sector collaborations
Pam Seanor

10. Social entrepreneurship: Performative enactments of compassion
Karin Berglund

Part IV Social entrepreneurship, participation and democracy
11. Deliberative democracy in social entrepreneurship: A discourse ethics approach to participative processes of social change
Trish Ruebottom

12. Social entrepreneurship and democracy
Angela M. Eikenberry

13. Social entrepreneurship, democracy and political participation
Denise M. Horn

Part V Social entrepreneurship, relationality and the possible
14. Expanding the realm of the possible: Field theory and a relational framing of social entrepreneurship
Victor J. Friedman, Israel Sykes and Markus Strauch

15. Becoming possible in the anthropocene? Becoming-socialentrepreneurship as more-than-capitalist practice
Marta B. Calás, Seray Ergene, Linda Smircich

16. New framings and practices of critical research
Jenny Cameron

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