Research Seminar Series – A Practice of Creating Blended Value in International Entrepreneurship

Presentation 1: Dr Bejan Analoui (University of Huddersfield)

“They see it as their last chance”: An examination of a NEET Youth Enterprise Initiative

This presentation provides tentative findings from an on-going case study of a Youth Enterprise Initiative (YEI). The YEI is funded by multiple agencies and aims to help those who are aged sixteen to twenty nine, and not in employment, education or training to start their own business and enhance their employability skills.  The case study was undertaken with a view to determining the barriers and enablers to learners’ participation, and to determine opportunities for programme improvement. Data collection, which is on-going, has to date comprised of interviews with learners (n=17) and staff (n=3), and a review of organisational documents. Initial analysis suggests that learners often face significant personal (e.g. poor mental health, limited or no familial and social support) and financial challenges (e.g. recent homeless, lack of basic necessities such as food and heating) that are barriers to their participation. Enablers involve the actions taken by staff to help learners address the aforementioned issues, and the establishing of supportive interpersonal relationships between staff and learners.

Presentation 2: Nathalie Nørregaard Larsen (University of Southern Denmark)

A Practice of Creating Blended Value in International Entrepreneurship

International entrepreneurship research has begun to pay attention to international ventures’ pursuit of social opportunities on a global scale (Zahra, Newey, & Li, 2014). Entrepreneurs’ indirect contribution to social wealth creation to society has for long been acknowledged, e.g. their creation of new jobs, markets, and technologies (Venkataraman, 1997). However, some entrepreneurs give particular priority to social and environmental issues (Mair & Marti, 2006) and many of these are in fact international (Chen, 2012; Marshall, 2011; Tukamushaba, Orobia, & George, 2011). This paper aims to investigate how social and economic value is created and configured in the process of organizing international social opportunities in developing countries. Taking an outset in the “practice turn” movement (Giddens, 1984), bridging individualism and structuralism, this study proposes an integrated understanding of value creation as business model activities within organizations related to managerial efforts but which extends outside organizations in the collaboration with partners and customers and with impact on local communities. The findings from interviews with the founders of three international social ventures highlight the role of the founders’ reflexive actions and the social structure that enables and constraints value-creating activities.