A process-oriented framework of competencies for sustainability entrepreneurship

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


Employee-owned businesses, benefit corporations, and other efforts in sustainability entrepreneurship are responding to prevalent challenges such as climate change, economic inequalities, and unethical business behavior. Universities, however, often fall short in suciently equipping students with competencies in sustainability entrepreneurship. One reason is that none of the existing frameworks links competencies to the actual processes of entrepreneurship, from discovery to consolidation. If graduates are to successfully start and run sustainability-oriented enterprises, the real-world entrepreneurship processes should provide the main orientation for training and learning. The present study proposes such a framework. We first conducted a qualitative literature review on competencies for entrepreneurs, sustainability professionals, social entrepreneurs, and sustainability entrepreneurs. We clustered the identified competencies according to conceptual similarities. On this basis, we describe sustainability entrepreneurship competencies along the entrepreneurial process model. The result is a process-oriented and literature-based framework of sustainability entrepreneurship competencies. It is intended to be used as a general vision for students, faculty, and entrepreneurs, as well as for the design of curricula, courses, and assessments.

Anzahl der Seiten18
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 02.12.2019

Bibliographische Notiz

This research was funded by the Lower Saxony Ministry of Science and Culture & Volkswagen Foundation through the grant "Educating Future Change Agents-Higher Education as a Motor of the Sustainability Transformation" (A115235) through the program "Science for Sustainable Development". The authors would like to thank their colleagues and/or supervisors Matthias Barth, George Basile, Aaron Redman, Jan-Ole Brandt, Theres Konrad, Jodie Birdman, Jana Timm, and Marie Weiss from Arizona State University (USA) and Leuphana University of Lneburg (Germany) for support on the research presented in this article and for comments on the manuscript at various stages.