On the compatibility of benevolence and self-interest:philanthropy and entrepreneurial orientation


This article explores the philanthropy of owner–managers of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) investigating whether and why more entrepreneurially oriented SMEs are also more likely to engage in philanthropic activities. We find support for a positive link between entrepreneurial orientation (EO) and philanthropy in a representative sample of 270 Lithuanian SMEs controlling for alternative explanations. We highlight that philanthropy is relatively common among SME owner–managers and thus complement existing research which views philanthropy as sequentially following wealth generation. In line with our theorizing, further qualitative findings point to drivers of philanthropy beyond those considered in the dominant strategic-instrumental perspective. Building on social-psychological theories of motivation, we argue and confirm that philanthropy can also be an expression of owner–managers’ altruistic values; these values can be compatible and even mutually reinforcing with entrepreneurship. Our study is set in a transition economy, Lithuania, facilitating the analysis of heterogeneity in attitudes toward philanthropy.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0266242614555245
Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School > Economics, Finance & Entrepreneurship
College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School
Additional Information: -Funding: European Commission: AIGIS project, Grant Agreement no. 225134; and ELUSI project FP7-SSH-2007-1, Grant Agreement no. 217622.
Uncontrolled Keywords: entrepreneurial orientation,motivation,philanthropy,values,transition,benevolence,self-interest,SME,Business and International Management
Publication ISSN: 1741-2870
Last Modified: 21 May 2024 07:09
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2014 12:55
Full Text Link: http://isb.sage ... ontent/34/3/303
Related URLs: http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2016-05
Published Online Date: 2014-11-18
Accepted Date: 2014-11-17
Authors: Mickiewicz, Tomasz (ORCID Profile 0000-0001-5261-5662)
Sauka, Arnis
Stephan, Ute (ORCID Profile 0000-0003-4514-6057)



Version: Accepted Version

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