Does the Social Enterprise Ecosystem Facilitate the Growth of Social Enterprises? An Extended Case Study of Taiwan, China


  • Ying Huang

    School of Medical Business, Guangdong Pharmaceutical University, Zhongshan, Guangdong, 528458, China

  • Caiyun Xu

    School of Management, Minzu University of China, Beijing, 100081, China

Received: 9 January 2024 | Revised: 24 January 2024 | Accepted: 25 January 2024 | Published Online: 18 February 2024


Social enterprise (SE) ecosystems are a central concept in understanding the growth of SEs, yet existing research still needs to discuss the attributes of the ecosystems and their actual impacts on SEs. Based on an extended case study, this paper explores the actual impact of ecosystems on SEs in Taiwan, China. It is found that the SE ecosystem is not a dichotomous variable of “yes-no”, but of being “strong” or “weak”. Taiwan’s SE ecosystem has supportive conditions for SEs, such as favorable public policies, research institutes, and certification of SEs. However, due to deviations in implementing public policies and the lack of cross-sectoral cooperation between the government and other actors, Taiwan’s SE ecosystem is functionally “weak”. That is, the ecosystem needs to play a sufficient role in constructing the identity of SEs, providing legitimacy support, and linking resources. Under these circumstances, while maintaining the stability of their mission and core competencies, SEs appeal to themselves to gain internal and external legitimacy to achieve organizational growth. This finding reveals the complex relationship between SE ecosystems and the growth of SEs, and has implications for the construction of supportive SE ecosystems.


Social enterprise; Ecosystem; Legitimacy; Organizational growth; Extended case method


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How to Cite

Huang, Y., & Xu, C. (2024). Does the Social Enterprise Ecosystem Facilitate the Growth of Social Enterprises? An Extended Case Study of Taiwan, China. Macro Management & Public Policies, 6(1), 1–20.


Article Type

Articles (This article belongs to the Special Issue "Social-Economic Inequity and Policy Innovation")