Exploring Environmental Entrepreneurship: Identity Coupling, Venture Goals, and Stakeholder Incentives

On the basis of a qualitative study of 25 renewable energy firms, we theorize why and how individuals engage in environmental entrepreneurship, inductively defined as: the use of both commercial and ecological logics to address environmental degradation through the creation of financially profitable organizations, products, services, and markets. Our findings suggest that environmental entrepreneurs: (1) are motivated by identities based in both commercial and ecological logics, (2) prioritize commercial and/or ecological venture goals dependent on the strength and priority of coupling between these two identity types, and (3) approach stakeholders in a broadly inclusive, exclusive, or co-created manner based on identity coupling and goals. These findings contribute to literature streams on hybrid organizing, entrepreneurial identity, and entrepreneurship’s potential for resolving environmental degradation.

Journal or Publication:
Journal of Management Studies
Jeffery York
Isobel O’Neil
Saras Sarasvathy
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