Organizational innovativeness: factors that drive innovations in social enterprises in Serbia
Research Question: This paper explores factors that drive innovativeness of social enterprises in Serbia. Motivation: Social enterprises are gaining importance on global scale, being recognized for their potential to respond to both economic and social challenges, attract capital and generate income in non-traditional ways. Innovativeness comes at the hart of their abilities to achieve their goals. This research is motivated by the idea to understand which factors influence innovativeness in Serbian social enterprises, and to compare these results with the pool of 11 European countries. Identification of the factors that make the difference between social enterprises which are innovative and the ones which are not, provides a chance for business owners/managers, as well as social policies creators, to affect these factors and thus influence the boost of innovativeness and, consequentially, success of socially oriented enterprises in Serbia. Additionally, building on results of a research conducted in 11 European countries, author’s idea is to perform cross analysis of identified innovation factors in social enterprises in Serbia with previously obtained aggregated results. Idea: This paper was driven by the idea to uncover the factors that make a difference in innovative behaviour of social enterprises. Data: Analysis was conducted using responses from on-line survey of 69 Serbian enterprises. We compared these answers to those of 837 social enterprises obtained via the same online surveys from 11 European countries, including Serbia.Tools: Statistical analysis was performed (using t-test for testing equality of means, z-test for testing equality of proportion, hi-square test, Fisher's exact test and some nonparametric tests to confirm the results obtained using parametric tests). The same tests were carried out on the data obtained from social enterprises in Serbia and on the data obtained from all 11 countries examined in order to draw conclusions about the same or different influence of certain factors on the innovativeness of social enterprises. Findings: We found that consciousness about their social mission, perception of innovation as important, financing obtained via grant schemes and involvement of owners, board, customers and NGOs are the most important drivers of innovativeness in Serbian social enterprises. European pool of explored SEs report additional factors influencing innovativeness, which did not appear important in Serbian sample. Contribution: This paper contributes to the research of determinants of the innovativeness of social enterprises by bringing original field data from Serbia, and by providing comparison with the same pool factors examined in the sample of European countries.
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