Exploring Social Issues in Entrepreneurship
Location: Weggis & Zurich, Switzerland
Date: 19-22 January, 2015
The fifth oikos Young Scholars Entrepreneurship Academy provides a unique platform for scholars in the field of entrepreneurship in the early stages of their careers. It will gather a maximum of 15 exceptional PhD candidates, post-docs and young faculty to advance academic research, expand networks, and build bridges into practice. The event includes paper development workshops, professional development roundtables, research talks and social activities – preferably outdoor – in the picturesque Swiss Alps.
Participants will benefit from presenting and discussing their work in progress with leading academics who will provide feedback and share advice about academic career and personal development. They will also have the opportunity to apply their expertise and skills in a HUB Challenge Lab in collaboration with the Impact Hub Zurich and Ashoka Switzerland. Feedback will be given by fellow participants as well as three international scholars:
- Wendy K. Smith
Associate Professor of Management, University of Delaware, USA
- Dror Etzion
Associate Professor of Strategy and Organization, McGill University, Canada
- Claus D. Jacobs
Academy Chair; Professor of Strategy, Berne School of Management, Berne University of Applied Sciences & University of St. Gallen, Switzerland
Social issues matter for entrepreneurs! Or do they? An ever increasing number of entrepreneurs are developing products, processes and practices that promote sustainable development. Yet making sustainability an integral component of entrepreneurship is challenging. Therefore, we invite conceptual and empirical contributions that may address, but are not limited to, the following exemplary topics and questions:
- What characterizes sustainability-oriented entrepreneurship and how does it differ from traditional entrepreneurship?
- How can we systematize and differentiate the different concepts of sustainability-oriented entrepreneurship?
- What is the role of networks, alliances, partnerships, and other social and organizational ties in advancing social entrepreneurship?
Legitimacy and goal conflicts
- How do sustainability-oriented entrepreneurs cope with tensions or even paradoxes?
- How do entrepreneurs cope with legitimacy challenges induced by their environmental and social goals?
Process and practices
- How do entrepreneurs recognize opportunities associated with societal need?
- How is strategy work by sustainability-oriented entrepreneurs unique?
- How do sustainability-oriented entrepreneurs create systemic changes, at a scale larger than their own organizations?
Role of entrepreneurs in developing economies
- How does entrepreneurship differ between advanced and developing economies?
- What challenges or opportunities do entrepreneurs face in developing economies?
Associate Professor of Management, University of Delaware, USA
Wendy Smith earned her Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior at Harvard Business School, and is currently an Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Alfred Lerner School of Business at the University of Delaware.
Wendy conducts research and teaches in the areas of leadership, with a particular emphasis on how leaders effectively address the complex, paradoxical tensions in organizations. She has studied how organizations and their leaders simultaneously explore new possibilities while exploit existing competencies, and how social enterprises simultaneously attend to social missions and financial goals. Her research has been published in journals such as Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, Harvard Business Review, Organization Science, and Academy of Management Learning and Education.
Wendy teaches leadership, organizational behavior and business ethics. She has taught MBAs and undergraduates at University of Delaware, Harvard, and University of Pennsylvania - Wharton. She was nominated for the MBA Teacher Award at the Lerner Business School each year from 2007-2014 and nominated for the University of Delaware Excellence in Teaching Award in 2008, 2009 and 2012.
Wendy has also taught executive and senior leadership teams how to manage interpersonal dynamics, emotional intelligence, high performing teams, organizational change and innovation, managing in times of crisis, and managing strategic paradoxes. She facilitated senior leadership teams at the Harvard Business School Executive Education program. She has also worked with senior teams at organizations such as American Automobile Association (AAA), Wilmington Trust, DHL, and IBM.
Wendy lives in Philadelphia with her husband and three children.
Associate Professor, Associate Professor of Strategy and Organization, McGill University, Canada
Dror Etzion is an associate professor of strategy and organizations at the Desautels Faculty of Management, and an associate member of the McGill School of the Environment. He joined McGill in 2008, after completing his Ph.D. studies at IESE Business School in Barcelona, Spain. Previously, Dror worked for 5 years in the Israeli software industry, and also spent a year at The Natural Step, an international non-profit research and consultancy organization focused on sustainable development.
Dror’s research program focuses on environmental metrics: how we decide what we measure, how new metrics diffuse in the organizational landscape, and how accurately the measures used actually capture the reality of business impacts on the environment. This research integrates areas of scholarship as diverse as economic sociology, signaling theory, behavioral economics and social psychology. In other research, he examines the effects of industry affiliation and geographic location on firm environmental performance. A third stream examines the social context of business and critically investigates the intersection of corporations, democracry and the public good.
In 2013 Dror received the Organizations and the Natural Environment (ONE) Division Emerging Scholar Award, presented at the Academy of Management (AoM) Business Meeting. The ONE Emerging Scholar Award recognizes early career academics who have already made outstanding research contributions in the area of organizations and the natural environment, and who appear to have a strong potential to continue making such contributions in the near future. Earlier in his career, his work was awarded the Booz Allen Hamilton/Strategic Management Society Fellowship and the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Program Dissertation Proposal Award. His research has been published or is forthcoming in Organization Science, Strategic Management Journal, Sloan Management Review, Academy of Management Perspectives, Journal of Management and other outlets.
Currently, Dror teaches the MBA core course on Markets and Globalization, an elective on Strategies for Sustainable Development, and in the not-for-profit consulting program.
Conference Chair and Professor of Strategy, Berne School of Management, University of Applied Sciences & University of St. Gallen
Claus' research focuses on strategic management and organizational change in general and on discursive practices of strategizing and organizing in particular. His work has been published in Human Relations, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, Journal of Management Inquiry, Journal of Organizational Change Management, Long Range Planning, MIT Sloan Management Review, Organization Studies and Scandinavian Journal of Management among others. It received Best Paper Nominations in four consecutive years at the Academy of Management.
His current research project, «Strategy as Discourse – Reconstructing a Social Practice» (see Research Projects for more details) is a four-year, Swiss NSF sponsored project and systematically explores the discursive dynamics and patterns in distinctively different empirical settings, namely for profit, non-profit and public-private partnership. The recently approved follow-up Swiss NSF project - to start in June 2012 - "Seeking Strategic Coherence - Balancing Internal and External Legitimacy in Pluralistic Settings" will explore how organizations in different pluralistic settings strive for the hard to attain balance between internal and external legitimacy as source of competitive advantage.
In June 2011 notably, he published - together with Warwick Business School's Loizos Heracleous - "Crafting Strategy - Embodied Metaphors in Practice" (Cambridge University Press, 2011) in which the authors argue that strategists must learn to complement analytical and convergent thinking with a more creative approach to strategizing that emphasizes synthetic and divergent ways of thinking. The theoretical underpinnings of this approach include embodied realism, interpretivism, practice theory, theory of play, design thinking, as well as discursive approaches such as metaphorical analysis, narrative analysis, dialogical analysis and hermeneutics.
He has co-edited the book «Innovating Strategy Process» (Blackwell Strategic Management Society Series 2005) with Steven Floyd, Johan Roos and Franz Willi Kellermanns. He has been co-editing a Journal of Management Studies special issue on «Strategy as Discourse» - forthcoming in 2011. In the newly formed Special Interest Group «Strategizing Activities and Practice» of the Academy of Management, he serves as Member of the Executive Committee. This SIG has similar rights to a fully fledged division, most notably it successfully run its own program at the AOM Annual Meeting 2011 in San Antonio. More to come!
He is member of the editorial boards of Journal of Management Studies and Scandinavian Journal of Management and serves as ad-hoc reviewer for Academy of Management Journal, Human Relations, Management Learning, Journal of Management Studies, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, Organization, Organization Studies, Perspectives on Process Organization Studies, UK's Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Leverhulme Trust (UK) as well as for the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF).
He holds a Ph.D. in Management and Organization from University of Dublin, Trinity College and a Master in Business and Economic Studies from Witten/Herdecke's School of Business. Also, he is a Visiting Research Fellow of the Saïd Business School/Green Templeton College, University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Daimler Benz Foundation. His work experience includes research fellowships and top management consultancy with Imagination Lab Foundation, Gemini Consulting and private consulting practice on strategy and organization development in for profit, non-profit, health and public sector organizations.
At MBA level, Claus teaches Strategic Management in St. Gallen's Full Time MBA and in St.Gallen's International Study Program (International, non-European visiting MBAs). In St. Gallen's Doctoral Program, he gives research seminars on 'Practice-based approaches to studying management and strategy' and 'Interpretive approaches of discourse analysis in management and organization'. In St. Gallen's Executive Education, he is responsible for the 'Managing Strategic Change' module in both the Essentials of Management Program and the Middle-Managers' Program as well as the 'Crafting Strategy through Embodied Metaphors' module in the Top Executives' Program.
Having been exposed to the Irish culture for three years, his colleagues are still confident that he is able to combine an Irish sense of humour with a German work ethos - and not vice versa...
PhD Candidate, Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode
“Nurturing Paradoxical cognition in Shared Leaderships with Behavioral Integration-Pathways to Sustainability for Entrepreneurs”
I am currently a doctoral student at the Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode and pursuing my research in the area of organizational behavior and human resource management. My research thesis focuses on the enablers of top management team processes necessary for organizational ambidexterity. I have a graduate degree in mechanical engineering and a post graduate degree in business administration. My other research interests include the upper echelon perspective, strategic choice processes, behavioral integration theory, and extra-firm knowledge affiliations to networks and business groups. Hopefully my research will be beneficial to the entrepreneurs of small and medium enterprises and researchers alike. I love to paint and you will usually find me with a game of Sudoku or a crossword puzzle.
PhD Candidate, University of Latvia
“Crowdfunding social entrepreneurship: Distant hope or reality”
Davis Plotnieks is a PhD student at University of Latvia focusing his research on financial instruments for social entrepreneurship and crowdfunding. He is also working as a research assistant at the Stockholm Institute for Transition Economics at Stockholm School of Economics (Stockholm, Sweden). His main research interests cover social entrepreneurship where he works in SEFORIS project with aim to explore the role of social entrepreneurs in reforming European societies.
He is also a lecturer of Business Management at the BA School of Business and Finance (Riga, Latvia) ranked as one of the top business schools in the Baltics and certified against the Investors in Excellence quality assurance standard. He teaches master programmes, most recently “Innovation Management”. Davis holds a Masters degree in Business Administration at the BA School of Business and Finance.
His professional work experience includes business consulting and compliance management services for both private and public organizations such as Ernst & Young, Lattelecom, Ministry of Regional Development and National Regulator of Public Utilities. He’s also a founder and board member of non-profit organization TEDxRiga – independently organized TEDx event in Latvia. Besides professional life and doing research, Davis enjoys marathon tourism, extreme sports and reading.
Assistant Professor, Ithaca College
“The Opportunity Construction Logic: A Source of Organizational Hybridity in Social Enterprises”
Dr. Duke is an Assistant Professor in Strategy at Ithaca College. He studies and writes about the entrepreneurial and innovation processes of firms that launch new-to-the-world businesses that serve low-income markets. As co-author and co-director of the BOP Protocol at Cornell’s Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise, he worked extensively in Africa and Latin America with multinational corporations and venture capital backed start-ups to launch and scale BOP-focused ventures. He consults with companies and other organizations on topics related to business development for low-income markets such as market entry strategies and business model innovation. Duncan holds a Ph.D. in Management from Cornell University, and from Tec de Monterrey an MBA and a Biochemical Engineering degree. He teaches courses on strategy, social entrepreneurship, negotiations, sustainable innovation, and organizational behavior. His latest publication, “Profits at the Bottom of the Pyramid” (with E. Simanis) appears in Harvard Business Review’s October 2014 issue.
PhD Candidate, University of Massachusetts-Boston
“Positioning the beneficiary: The role of entwinement in social enterprise impact and performance measurement”
I am currently a PhD Candidate in the Organizations and Social Change track of the University of Massachusett’s College of Management PhD in Business Administration. My background is in education and youth and educational equity focused non-profits and I hold a Masters of Education from Delta State University in Mississippi and a Bachelors of Business Administration from the College of Charleston in South Carolina.
I joined Teach For America following my undergrad and taught middle school math in rural Mississippi where I became interested in the role organizations play in maintaining, amplifying or alleviating social inequality. While I felt that I was doing important work in the classroom, I didn’t feel that I was changing the core systems negatively affecting my students and decided that I wanted to study organizations to affect these systems on a greater scale. Social enterprises appear to be one lever with which to initiate change in communities and have been the focus of my research since beginning the program.
My previous research has been in two major streams: one focusing on the decision making drivers of social entrepreneurs when determining the legal registration of their enterprises or making the choice to change legal registration, and one examining the youth justice movement in Boston and collaboration in organizing practices across youth organizing groups. These projects have led me to my current research on how the relationship beteeen enterprise and beneficiary—entwinement—affects the individual impacts a social enterprise can offer to individual beneficiaries and how it measures its peformance.
I love to read, travel and spend time with those I care about and look forward to meeting everyone in a few short weeks.
PhD Candidate, Australian National University
“Legitimacy, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship in Electricity Industries: the case of distributed energy storage”
I am a PhD scholar at the Fenner School of Environment and Society, the Australian National University. My broad academic interests include the analysis of renewable energy systems, electricity markets, regulatory frameworks, and innovation for sustainability. My PhD research is aimed at investigating the effects of institutional context on business model formation in electricity markets. This project aims to develop theoretical tools to improve our understanding of technological transitions and decarbonisation across a range of technologies, sectors, and regions. In addition to my PhD research, I am currently involved in a number of projects investigating the feasibility of inter- and intra-regional network integration to supply renewable energy to developing nations, the development of micro-grid energy systems in sub-Saharan Africa, and electricity market designs for sectoral decarbonisation.
Prior to commencing my PhD, I completed my BSc (Science) at the Australian National University where I focused on the modelling of renewable energy systems and energy storage technologies. Somewhere along the way I ended up talking to economists and political scientists more than other physicists and never looked back.
Aside from my academic work, I love travel, wine, cheese, and skiing – so Switzerland sounds perfect to me (despite the fact I am leaving the Australian summer).
PhD Candidate, University of Cambridge
“Exploring Social Issues in Entrepreneurship”
Laura Claus is a doctoral student at the University of Cambridge, Judge Business School, working with Dr. Shahzad Ansari and Professor Paul Tracey on different projects in the field of Social Innovation.
As a former student-athlete in the U.S., she obtained a double-degree, a BA in Psychology and a BBA in Business Admin and Finance, from the University of San Diego in California. In her college years, her sympathy for community service motivated her to work as a volunteer at a center for autistic children and at an elementary school’s academic club. This passion translated into her current research focus on the emergence of business ventures for social development, social responsibility, and corporate sustainability.
Alongside her current research project on new legal structures for social entrepreneurs, Laura works for Village Inc. Africa, a social venture in Tanzania that has developed the concept of ‘macrocredits’ in an effort to support rural villages establish and grow community-led companies.
Besides doing research and her working commitments, Laura enjoys traveling, playing sports and engaging with people from all over the world. She is very interested in fostering a network of similar-minded scholars and practitioners that are committed to find solutions for the social and environmental problems of today’s world.
She can be reached via email at .
PhD Candidate, Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (IIMC)
“Issues In Women Entrepreneurship In India – An Institutional And A Game Theoretic Perspective”
I am a doctoral candidate in behavioural sciences at IIM Calcutta. My ongoing thesis work is on decision making and negotiation at the top management level in the context of implementation of innovation strategies in organizations. The broad research questions involve CEO overconfidence, organization slack, top management team opposition and the resulting CEO conflict response styles, and the post performance feedback escalation/de-escalation. I am also interested in entrepreneurship especially women entrepreneurship in developing countries, inequality (bottom of pyramid phenomena), group dynamics and leadership, and behavioural economics.
Before starting my doctoral work in social sciences, I completed my Bachelors in Engineering (Honors) in Electronics and Electrical Engineering from PEC (Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh, India). This enables me to understand and view research issues in social sciences from a systematic and analytical perspective. Therefore the research methods employed by me are primarily quantitative. Since the past couple of years, I have been very interested in exploring the social issue of inequality in the Indian society.
Besides academics and research, I worked for technology firms such as BSNL (Bhartiya Sanchar Nigam Limited), CSIO (Central Scientific Instruments Organization), SLR Infotech and ALSTOM Projects India Limited, India. I love painting, gardening, travelling, playing badminton etc.
Lecturer, University College Dublin
“Toward A Theory Of Stakeholder-Centric Entrepreneurship”
Rashedur Chowdhury specializes in understanding the dynamic relationship between firms and marginalized stakeholders, conceptualizing how marginalized stakeholders influence firms, and how firms respond. Rashedur’s empirical works include research of access to low-cost HIV/AIDS medicines in South Africa, low-paid workers in Bangladesh, and mining activists in South Asia and the UK. His most recent project examines rhetoric and reality in the context of the Rana Plaza collapse in Bangladesh; making sense of how victims of Rana Plaza see their own situation. He also examines how victims remake their lives under an extreme condition and contribute to their own and to societal well-being.
Rashedur’s Ph.D. thesis, titled “Reconceptualizing the Dynamics of the Relationship between Marginalized Stakeholders and Multinational Firms,” has received The Society for Business Ethics Best Dissertation Award, 2014. His award-winning thesis brought a unique perspective on how firms can and should explore new mechanisms for engaging marginalized stakeholders. By challenging old dogmas, including that marginalized stakeholders are poor, lack education, and are incapable of understanding and participating in politics, Rashedur argued marginalized stakeholders have “political imaginations and capabilities,” allowing them to flourish in the longer term. Firms can be more innovative and successful when they work with marginalized stakeholders, enabling these stakeholders to develop further skill sets and capabilities (termed “stakeholder capabilities”) rather than restricting development of stakeholder capabilities in fear it would challenge firms in nuanced ways. When marginalized stakeholders attain stakeholder capabilities, they bring economic and socio-political freedom to firms, to themselves, and to wider society.
Prior to joining Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business as a Lecturer, Rashedur received his Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge, and he held a Batten Fellowship at the Batten Institute, Darden Graduate School of Business, University of Virginia (UVA). Rashedur has been invited as a Visiting Scholar by various institutions, including INSEAD Business School, France; Darden, UVA; Faculty of Business and Economics, HEC Lausanne, Switzerland; School of Business and Economics, University of Jyväskylä, Finland; The Center for the Study of Democracy, School of Social Sciences, University of California, Irvine; and Hass School of Business, University of California, Berkeley.
Rashedur’s research interests include poverty and inequality, stakeholder theory, social movement theory, capabilities approach (from development economics), political sociology, political CSR, sustainability and evolutionary economics.
PhD Candidate, George Washington University
“Measuring to Improve vs. Measuring to Prove: Understanding Evaluation and Performance Measurement in Social Enterprise”
Saurabh is a doctoral candidate at the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration, at the George Washington University. His research focuses on the use of program evaluation and performance measurement in the fields of social enterprise, nonprofits and environmental programs.
Saurabh is also Research Director at the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), where he leads a number of research initiatives focused on evaluation methodologies for impact investing, entrepreneurial incubators and accelerators, and the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Saurabh was previously Research Officer for New Ventures, an environmental accelerator established by the World Resources Institute, where his research focused on clean technology and energy access entrepreneurship in Asia.
Originally from Mumbai, Saurabh has worked on rural water and sanitation issues in several states across India. He has a Master of Public Policy degree from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Engineering degree from the University of Mumbai. Besides his research, Saurabh enjoys travelling, photography, and listening to ‘60s music. He lives with his wife in Washington, DC.
PhD Candidate, Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode
“Moderating effect of formal institutions on individual resource commitment to social enterprise entry”
Sreevas Sahasranamam is a doctoral student in Strategic Management area at the Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode. His dissertation is focussed on understanding the effect of institutional context on social entrepreneurship.
He has done his Bachelor of Technology in Applied Electronics and Instrumentation from Kerala University. He has received gold medals from College of Engineering Trivandrum and Christ Nagar Senior Secondary School for his scholastic achievements.
Sreevas has authored multiple research papers presented in various conferences and seminars around the world in the fields of humanitarian technology, and entrepreneurship. One of his papers was awarded the Best Development Paper award at the British Academy of Management conference 2014. He has also been selected for the Strategic Research Foundation Dissertation Fellow Program for the period 2015-16.
Sreevas has also worked on consulting projects for the Wayanad district administration in Kerala like the social audit of Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) in the district, and developing a plan for community based sustainable tourism for the district. He has worked on multiple other humanitarian technology projects like – (1) solar based rural electrification project in Kollam district of Kerala which went on to become a book publication, (2) an automated blood bank database project that was adjudged the second best research project at IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference Seattle, 2012 and (3) a project on operational and monitoring aspects of Tamil Nadu government’s Hospital on Wheels Programme.
Sreevas is an active volunteer of IEEE and holds positions of responsibilities in multiple committees like IEEE Malabar Subsection Industrial Relations Committee, IEEE Community Solutions Initiative (CSI) ambassador, and IEEE Kerala Section Special Interest Group of Humanitarian Technology (SIGHT) Committee.
Lecturer, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University
"In the name of patriotism. Sustainable entrepreneur, Opportunity creation and Institutional change"
I hold a PhD in Management from the School of Management at Xi’an Jiaotong University with a Sino-German Joint Ph.D Program. Since 2008 I have been working at International Business School at Suzhou, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University. I work as a lecture, teaching on CSR and strategy. In the past years, I have taught more than 1,000 students on the module of CSR. I am currently the coordinator of PRME (http://www.unprme.org) in my business school. My research focuses on the interface between entrepreneurship and institution with special interest on the study of corporate environmental strategy and sustainable entrepreneurship. In 2010-2012, I conducted a granted research project from NSFC (http://www.nsfc.gov.cn) on the study of timing strategy of environmental technological innovation. Recently, I am focusing more on investigating the interactions among entrepreneurial orientation, corporate environmental strategy and sustainability. I have strong passion to push forward the development of CSR and social entrepreneurship in the region I work at. With my professional work experience, I serve as the strategic consultant of Suzhou Industrial Park CSR Alliance and GRI (http://www.globalreporting.org) trainer. I hope I could bring more valuable knowledge and insights from my research to practical management in business and government.
To allow for in-depth scholarly discussions, the oikos Young Scholars Entrepreneurship Academy is limited to a maximum of 15 participants (PhD candidates; post-docs or young faculty).
The fee is CHF 500 and covers accommodation, board and excursions.
Your application should contain:
(1) a paper outline of max. 3 pages,
(2) a short curriculum vitae and
(3) a letter of motivation and interest.
Please send your application via email to the academy's Chair, Claus Jacobs:
Please submit your application by
Deadline extended: October 31, 2014
Applicants will be notified by
November 20, 2014.
Final papers must be received for circulation to academy participants by
December 20, 2014.
In order to facilitate participation by outstanding young scholars from developing countries, we offer up to three grants (fee and travel). To apply for one of these grants, please provide a letter of motivation and a letter of reference from a senior faculty member.
Apply for the oikos Young Scholars Entrepreneurship Academy (19-22 January 2015) and YES Switzerland (25 January - 7 February 2015) and get 20% discount on the both participant fees. The first three approved combo applications until October 15 receive 20% (additional) discount on both tuition fees!