In Research


Year: 2019
Published in: Journal of cleaner production
Cited as: Bozhikin, Ivan, Janaina Macke, and Luana Folchini da Costa. “The role of government and key non-state actors in social entrepreneurship: A systematic literature review.” Journal of cleaner production 226 (2019): 730-747.


Social Entrepreneurship, Scopus


Social entrepreneurship is recognized as a key tool for overcoming social problems in society and supporting sustainable development. While social entrepreneurship is not a new phenomenon, the field has experienced significant growth over the past 15 years, either when applied to social problem-solving in a traditional way, or focused on private-sector entrepreneurship and large-scale transformation. However, there is still a lack of scientific review papers examining various government regulatory mechanisms, implemented on different government levels for stimulating social entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship ecosystems. This study aims to analyze the state-of-the-art of social entrepreneurship and its relation with government and key non-state actors. Following Pittaway et al. (2014) and Cerchione et al. (2018), a systematic literature review was carried out using the Scopus database, covering the period from 2001 up to 20th of March 2018, which resulted in a corpus of 478 scientific articles. The papers were ranked by the number of citations, according to the Web of Science® database, from which were selected the 102 most representative works. The abstracts of these selected studies were organized and submitted into an analysis of content via the 2015 edition of Alceste® software. Following the reading of all sources, the papers were classified and a matrix of data was produced, which allowed the descriptive analysis. The results show that there are at least six levels of government intervention to facilitate the development of social entrepreneurship. It also identified 4 directions taken by the government in support of social entrepreneurship, and 11 regulatory mechanisms, both of which could be deepened in future studies. The role of key non-state actors in the social entrepreneurship field has also been discussed. Based on the study, a future research agenda on the topic has been defined in the following directions: (i) a combination and coordination of regulatory mechanisms for better stimulation of social entrepreneurship, (ii) government policy oriented to the whole social entrepreneurship ecosystem, (iii) social capital, (iv) business models for social entrepreneurship ecosystems and government support.


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