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Social Innovations in Germany - How are the innovations organized and who are the social entrepreneurs behind?

  • The phenomenon of social innovation is becoming an increasingly important topic with an increasing number of people implementing different types of social innovation projects. So far, little research has been carried out to understand the structure of the projects and the characteristics of the entrepreneurs and initiators behind. This study aims to close this gap by analyzing 80 social innovation projects in the fields of housing, poverty, immigration and environment as well as by examining 117 founders behind these projects. The main results suggest that the projects are clustered around the metropolitan areas of Berlin, Munich and Stuttgart and tend to be founded relatively recently. No clear tendencies and distinctive characteristics in terms of financing and organization could be observed. The social entrepreneurs tend to be of a younger age and most notably, an overwhelming majority are academics holding at least a bachelor’s degree and even more frequently a master’s degree. Generally, some field-specific differences could as well be observed, such as more engineers being active in the field of environment and more individuals with a social sciences background being active in the poverty sector. However, the findings of this study should not be generalized to the entire social innovation scene in Germany and to all its social entrepreneurs.

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Author:Jennifer Mercy Kissiwah Müller, Markus Kleiser, Lisa-Marie Merkel, Patricia D. Messner
Advisor:Eva Kirner
Document Type:Report
Year of Completion:2019
Release Date:2019/11/05
Degree Program:IMM - International Management
Open Access:Frei verfügbar
Licence (German):License LogoEs gilt das UrhG