Social enterprise in the public sector. MetService: thinking beyond the weather
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to consider the role of government in fostering entrepreneurial activity and economic development, thereby balancing social and economic objectives. Design/methodology/approach – Case studies on state-owned enterprises (SOEs) in New Zealand, one of which is examined in detail, are analysed and compared. Triangulated data from interviews, texts, and personal observation were collected and analysed in two separate phases, examining effective pathways for social enterprise in the public sector and related themes. Findings – Findings suggest the role of government is not limited to policy-making. Examination of activity which aims to balance social and economic objectives identifies several factors which have contributed to successful and entrepreneurial operations within SOEs. Research limitations/implications – Although limited to a single case, this paper reveals the nature and importance of entrepreneurial activity within government organisations. Practical implications – Deregulation as an alternative to privatisation is examined and evaluated. Originality/value – Evidence is provided to support entrepreneurship within the public sector as a strong foundation for balancing both social and economic objectives.
Entrepreneurialism, Government, New Zealand, Public sector organizations
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