Social Enterprises & their Challenges and Solutions in a Social Ecosystem...

12. Jan 2024

Cross-border analysis (A/SK) based on SEED-Hub project findings in the journal "soziales_Kapital"

This article deals with the challenges for founders of social enterprises in the context of social  enterprise ecosystems. Based on a research study (in the course of which 75 interviews were conducted in Austria and Slovakia), five key issues were identified as major challenges that social enterprises need to overcome: financing, data mining, human capacities, strategy building and  networking. The aim of the article is to show how academic educational institutions can support social enterprise ecosystems in addressing and mitigating these challenges. Since there are different types of social enterprises, a distinction between these types is first made before presenting a core concept of an entrepreneurial ecosystem. A comparison of degree programmes for social entrepreneurship at both Austrian and Slovak educational institutions revealed that there is a gap between the provision of basic business knowledge and the teaching of social work skills. Business degree programmes frequently neglect skills associated with social work, while social work degree programmes do not incorporate fundamental business skills. The article concludes with a discussion of two case studies illustrating that the integration of business management skills with social work skills is a crucial success factor, ensuring the sustainable existence and development of a social enterprise.

The article was published in peer reviewed journal soziales_kapital:
Manfred Tauchner, Johann Praith, Manuela Kovalev, Vlasta Kostercová, Miriama Dubovská, Gábor Szüdi, Nina Trinkl, Elke Szalai, Pamela Bartar. Social Enterprises and their Challenges and Solutions in a Social Ecosystem: A Cross-border Analysis in Austria and Slovakia. soziales_kapital, Bd. 27 (2023).  Rubrik: Werkstatt. Eisenstadt. Printversion:

Gábor Szüdi and Pamela Bartar (ZSI) are co-authors and were leading the project contribution to the bilateral SK-A Intereg SEED-Hub project, which was finalized successfully in 2022.






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Tags: Austria, Slovakia, social entrepreneurship, social innovation

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