Social enterprise emergence from social movement activism:the Fairphone case

Akemu, Ona and Whiteman, Gail and Kennedy, Steve (2016) Social enterprise emergence from social movement activism:the Fairphone case. Journal of Management Studies, 53 (5). pp. 846-877. ISSN 0022-2380

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Effectuation theory invests agency—intention and purposeful enactment—for a new venture creation in the entrepreneurial actor(s). Based on the results of a 15-month in-depth longitudinal case study of Amsterdam-based social enterprise Fairphone, we argue that effectual entrepreneurial agency is co-constituted by distributed agency, the proactive conferral of material resources and legitimacy to an eventual entrepreneur by heterogeneous actors external to a new venture. In the context of social movement activism, we show how an effectual network pre-committed resources to an inchoate social enterprise to produce a material artefact because it symbolised moral values of network members. We develop a model of social enterprise emergence based on these findings. We theorise the role of material artefacts in effectuation theory and suggest that, in the case, the artefact served as a boundary object, present in multiple social words and triggering commitment from actors not governed by hierarchical arrangements.

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Journal Article
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Journal of Management Studies
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22 Apr 2016 13:56
Last Modified:
17 Sep 2023 01:48