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School of Business | Department of Management Studies | Entrepreneurship | 2014
Thesis number: 13784
Finnish passive house entrepreneurs' motivators to start sustainable enterprises
Author: Puhakainen, Sanna
Title: Finnish passive house entrepreneurs' motivators to start sustainable enterprises
Year: 2014  Language: eng
Department: Department of Management Studies
Academic subject: Entrepreneurship
Index terms: yrittäjyys; entrepreneurship; kestävä kehitys; sustainable development; motivaatio; motivation; prosessit; processes
Pages: 86
Full text:
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Key terms: sustainable; entrepreneurship; motivation; passive house; process
The objective of the study was to research the motivators of passive house entrepreneurs to start sustainable enterprises. In addition the aim was to find weather their motivators had changed dur-ing the entrepreneurship process and do they even see themselves as sustainable entrepreneurs. Finally the objective was to find out if passive house entrepreneurs follow a particular entrepre-neurship process proposed by Belz and Binder (2013).

The methodology used was a multiple case study design. The questions were semi-structured and open-ended. The analysis consisted of unique case analysis and cross-case pattern analysis.

The results were manifold. All the entrepreneurs found three motivators to be important through-out the process. Those were desire for independence, need for achievement and drive. Identifying gap in the market and passion increased during the process in two cases. These findings were in line with previous literature. Green values, on the other hand, were not seen as a main motivator in any one of the cases, throughout the whole process. This finding contradicts previous literature.

Related to the topic is the question focusing on triple bottom line i.e. how they divide the goals of their enterprises? All of them saw economic, ecological and social goals in their businesses. The most dominant goals were either the economic or the ecological ones, which is understandable bearing in mind the product at hand. Given the high level of technical innovations in the products, it would be reasonable to add a forth element, technological goals, into the analysis.

The research part focusing on the process itself didn't support the earlier findings of Belz and Binder (2013). Firstly there seems to be different kinds of triggers to start sustainable enterprises. In these cases the triggers haven't been socio-ecological problems but rather socio-ecological in-terests. Secondly, recognising entrepreneurial opportunities and aligning the socio-ecological problems with the entrepreneurial opportunities were not clear steps in either case, opposite to what Belz and Binder (2013) have suggested. And thirdly, funding and forming the enterprise has occurred mainly in much earlier phase compared to Belz and Binder's (2013) process model.

Overall the findings lead to questioning whether earlier research defining sustainable entrepre-neurship is insufficient. If the company and the product are sustainable, but the entrepreneur is not motivated by green values, does the entrepreneur fulfil the criteria of a sustainable entrepre-neur? Is sustainable entrepreneurship defined through the entrepreneur or the enterprise?
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