Alina Spanuth, PhD researcher

My research focuses on social enterprises in and around social entrepreneurial ecosystems. I am using qualitative empirical research methods to study social entrepreneurship in emerging country contexts, currently with a focus on South Asia. Thereby, I am investigating the development and change of social entrepreneurial ecosystems, disaster and crisis as external enablers of social entrepreneurship, institutional change, the possibility for inclusion of marginalized groups through social entrepreneurship and the legitimacy of social enterprises.

For a detailed overview of current working papers, please have a look on my CV.




Spanuth, A. & Urbano, D. (2024) Exploring social enterprise legitimacy within ecosystems from an institutional approach: A systematic literature review and research agenda. International Journal of Management Reviews, 26(2): 1–21. https://doi.org/10.1111/ijmr.12349

Spanuth, A., & Urbano, D. (2023). Legitimation Strategies of Social Enterprises in the Institutional Context of Nepal. In Academy of Management Proceedings (Vol. 2023, No. 1, p. 16044). Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510: Academy of Management.

Spanuth, A., Al Mamun, A., Zhang, C., Acharjee, S., & Hawach, F. (2023). Zero-COVID Policy and Entrepreneurship: A Multidimensional Perspective in the Context of China. In Entrepreneurship Business Debates: Multidimensional Perspectives across Geo-political Frontiers (pp. 97-110). Singapore: Springer Nature Singapore.

Spanuth, A. & Gümüsay, A.A. (2021). Three ways social entrepreneurs work in conflict regions. PioneersPost. https://www.pioneerspost.com/news-views/20210421/three-ways-social-entrepreneurs-work-conflict-regions


20th Social Entrepreneurship Conference, Lausanne, Switzerland 2024. Working Paper “Deconstructing Impact: Adapting the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Framework for Social Entrepreneurship.”

Academy of Management, Boston 2023, Working paper "Legitimation strategies of social enterprises in the institutional context of Nepal"

EGOS, Cagliari 2023, Working Paper "Legitimizing marginalized groups through social entrepreneurship in a developing country context"

EURAM, Dublin 2023, Working Paper "Between disaster and development: Social entrepreneurial ecosystem in the institutional context of Nepal"

DRUID, Lisbon 2023, Working Paper "Social entrepreneurial ecosystem development amidst disaster in a developing country context: An institutional approach"


ESADE Business School, Sant Cugat, Barcelona, Spain

Teaching Assistent in Master Innovation and Entrepreneurship (2023)

Other Activities

Advisory Board Member of the Journal of Enterprising ​Communities

Reviewer for the Journal of Small Business Economics, Social ​Enterprise Journal & British Management Journal

Research assistant at the Technical University of Hamburg ​(2020-2021)

Professional Associations

ECSB Institutions and Entrepreneurship Special Interest Group

CREIS Centre for Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation Research, UAB, Spain


Alina Spanuth

Department of Business and Centre for Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation Research

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain

Edifici B, Campus UAB, 08193 Cerdanyola del Vallès (Barcelona), Spain.




"Education is the most powerful weapon that you can use to change the world" - Nelson Mandela