Strategic Orientations, Situational Characteristics, and Social Value Creation in Social Enterprises

Yingzhao Xiao, Kevin Au, Zhen Liu, Marta Katarzyna Dowejko

Research output: Chapter in book/report/conference proceedingConference proceedingpeer-review


While the internal challenges between business and social missions in social enterprises have attracted increased scholarly attention, less is known about how social enterprises exploit the dual missions in their strategies in response to external environment in the pursuit of social goals. Drawing upon the strategic orientation literature, we propose that competitor and social orientations are two types of strategic actions social enterprises employ to address market competition and create social value, and that the effects of both orientations are contingent on situational characteristics. Results based on a dual-informant survey of 230 social enterprises in China show that both competitor and social orientations can enhance social performance. However, their actual social outcomes depend on contingency factors characterized by local resource endowment, network competence, and founder expertise, which moderate the above relationships. We discuss the reasons behind social enterprises’ choice of different approaches in pursuing their social goals and highlight a contingent approach to capturing the complexity of social enterprise actions and performance.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAcademy of Management Proceedings 2019
PublisherAcademy of Management
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2019
Event79th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2019: Understanding the Inclusive Organization - Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Duration: 9 Aug 201913 Aug 2019 (Conference website) (Conference proceedings)

Publication series

NameAcademy of Management Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0065-0668
ISSN (Electronic)2151-6561


Conference79th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, AOM 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBoston, Massachusetts
Internet address


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