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Information Resources Management Association
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Social Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation: A Conceptual Distinction

Social Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation: A Conceptual Distinction
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Author(s): Jorge Cunha (University of Minho, Portugal), Paul Benneworth (University of Twente, The Netherlands) and Pedro Oliveira (University of Porto, Portugal)
Copyright: 2017
Pages: 25
Source title: Entrepreneurship: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1923-2.ch069


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In the last two decades, a renewed interest on the concepts of social innovation and social entrepreneurship has emerged. In fact, a large body of theoretical developments that occurred in the fields of innovation, territorial development, social economics, and public governance (among others) have emphasised the need to adopt new approaches to new (or emerging) problems, such as: climate change; chronic diseases; increasing inequalities in income distribution; high rates of unemployment (particularly among young people); the impact of ageing population; and mass urbanisation and social exclusion phenomenon. This chapter aims at contributing to this literature by making an attempt to distinguish both concepts: social innovation and social entrepreneurship. For that purpose, the definition of each of these concepts, their main features as well as their major differences are presented. Finally, the role that HEIs might play in promoting social innovation and social entrepreneurship initiatives is also discussed.

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