Conceptualizing social entrepreneurship: perspectives from the literature

  • João J. Ferreira
  • Cristina I. Fernandes
  • Marta Peres-Ortiz
  • Helena Alves
Original Article


Social entrepreneurship is an emerging trend that has attracted the interest of the most diverse researchers whether due to the characteristics of the social entrepreneur or the type of surrounding environments that prove most propitious to the emergence of this particular type of entrepreneurship. This study attempts to identify the main theoretical characteristics of social entrepreneurship through recourse to bibliometric analysis based on co-citations. The results enable the aggregation of the state of the art in social entrepreneurship across four perspectives: social value, well-being embeddedness, internationalization and institutional.


Social entrepreneurship Social entrepreneur Bibliometric analysis Co-citations Intellectual structure 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • João J. Ferreira
    • 1
  • Cristina I. Fernandes
    • 2
  • Marta Peres-Ortiz
    • 3
  • Helena Alves
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Business and ManagementUniversity of Beira Interior & NECE – Research Unit of Business Sciences CovilhãCovilhãPortugal
  2. 2.Instituto Politecnico de Castelo Branco & NECE – Research Unit of Business Sciences CovilhãCovilhãPortugal
  3. 3.Universitat Politècnica de ValènciaValènciaSpain

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