What Role for the Private Sector in Systemic Social Change?

Stefannia Russo Sampaio

Studenteropgave: Speciale


Humanity is faced with an exponential increase on the gravity of socioecological challenges. Today, the challenges are increasingly global, interrelated, complex, and contribute to systemically increasing unsustainability on a scale and at a pace unseen before. Against this background, the path to a promising future will not be realized without the involvement of all state and non-state parties.

Meanwhile, the emergent Social Economy, powered by advancements in technology and the growing emphasis on the human dimension, demands a different involvement. Increasingly, more and more people connected, and so are their minds and their hearts. Humanity is on the verge of a new era of scepticism and calls for commitment and transparency from the private sector.

To survive the private sector needs to respond. Aside from monetary donations and voluntary actions, corporations are demanded to use their unique position to play a much greater role. Together, academics and practitioners are charged with the responsibility of creating the infra-structure necessary to advance a more efficient involvement of private sector organizations.

This Master thesis is driven by the assumption that there is a gap to be understood in the role of the private sector in enabling social change which is systemically designed to address the global, interrelated and complex social challenges of our times in the emergent Social Economy.

The interest in systemic change led to a literature review on Social Innovation theory. Since the assumption lied within the role of the private sector, the practitioner aspect of Social Innovation also needed to be investigated. Thus, extensive research on the industry was conducted and resulted in a multitude of organizations operating with different theoretical frameworks and organizational forms.

Inspired by their work, the theoretical framework of this study evolved to also encompass System Thinking, Systems Change and Diffusion of Innovation. This served as the foundation to critically analyse the role of the private sector in systemic social change addressed by social innovation organizations. The cases of this study were chosen upon the selection criteria of innovationess and experience in working with the private sector.

UddannelserMaster i Socialt Entreprenørskab og Management (SEM), (Masteruddannelse) Master
Udgivelsesdato31 maj 2018
Antal sider53
VejledereAnne Vorre Hansen