Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Title: Sustaining the Sustainable: Business Modeling for Social Ventu...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297The key to the lean startup model (and most business modeling tools) ...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Sustaining the Sustainable: Business Modeling for Social Ventures    ...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297still more complex on the surface but actually offers increased oppor...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297“Pivot”: Similarly, the notion of pivots is an arena where social ent...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297The first “Sustaining the Sustainable” AoM workshop was in 1999 and i...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Back in 1999, ONE [and ENT] co-sponsored a preconference workshop ent...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Format(15 minutes) Brief overview and introductions [slides, etc. wil...
Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Key Organizers   1. Dr. Franziska Günzel, Aarhus University, Denmark,...
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Sustaining the Sustainable (AoM PDW 2013)

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A preconference workshop proposed for the 2013 Academy of Management: Applying the lean startup model to social and sustainable ventures. Hands-on workshop and intensive discussion, Terrific crew of organizers and more.

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Sustaining the Sustainable (AoM PDW 2013)

  1. 1. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Title: Sustaining the Sustainable: Business Modeling for Social VenturesPrimary Sponsors: Entrepreneurship (ENT); Other Co-sponsors: Organizations & NaturalEnvironment (ONE); Teaching Theme Committee (TTC); Practice Theme Committee (PTC);Technology and Innovation Management (TIM), International Management Division (IM).(Also: Academy of Management Strategic Doing Initiative)Sustaining the Sustainable: Business Modeling for Social Ventures Dr. Franziska Günzel, Aarhus University, Denmark Aarhus Dr. Jill Kickul, NYU, New York, Dr. Norris Krueger, Entrepreneurship Northwest, Dr. Jacob Park, Green Mountain College, VT Dr. Florian Forster, visiting scholar at Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley; Prof. Jennifer Walske, UC Berkeley, Director of Social Entrepreneurship Dr. Suresh Kumar, founder of an Inc. 500 sustainable venture (GreenEarth), Special guest: Mr. Trevor Owens, founder of the Lean Startup Machine (#1 lean startup bootcamp) (also invited; may participate by video) Dr Alex Osterwalder, author of the Business Model Canvas (invited) Mr. Bill Drayton, founder and CEO of Ashoka (invited) Mr. Tom Park, CTO of the United States, DC (invited) Ms. Leah Nichols, AAAS/NSF project lean public policy development, DC (invited) Mr. Franck Nouyrigat, co-founder of Startup Weekend, Seattle/France.(invited)n.b.: we refer to “sustainable” as not just „green‟ but triple bottom line sustainable which manycall “social” ventures. Our intent with the language is to be inclusive.AbstractDespite the best efforts on both sides, there are still disconnects between social and sustainableentrepreneurs and their academic counterparts. However, brilliant use of state of the art toolssuch as design thinking and social media have led to great innovations. It was social andsustainable entrepreneurs and academics who led the way for the revolution of crowdfunding.Before there could be Kickstarter, Kiva blazed the trail. 1
  2. 2. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297The key to the lean startup model (and most business modeling tools) is vigorous, ruthless,continuous questioning of the venture‟s most cherished assumptions. Absent very strong marketforces, it falls to the entrepreneur, for-profit or non-profit, to keep testing and re-testing what liesbeneath their value propositions – if they wish to continue identifying and delivering great valueto their stakeholders.Social and sustainable entrepreneurship is at the leading edge for teaching, practice and researchin business modeling. These bleeding edge tools are almost essential for identifying andvalidating triple bottom line opportunities. We expect that this is just the start of developing aneven more comprehensive “entrepreneurial” tool kit to promote sustainability.However, social and sustainable entrepreneurship faculty members are thus far surprisinglyunder-informed about these tools, despite fast-growing interest. (At the recent NYU socialentrepreneurship conference, out of ~50 scholars queried only 5 knew the lean startup model (oreven Startup Weekend.) Many are “winging it” but want to get better. They also recognize thegreat research potential. 2
  3. 3. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Sustaining the Sustainable: Business Modeling for Social Ventures [a/k/a “Questioning Capitalism” with “Questioning” as an adjective, not gerund]RationaleThe lean startup phenomenon has gone global and is at the heart of the revolution not only instartups but also new product development and now… social entrepreneurship? And what betterway to help identify and deliver triple bottom line sustainable opportunities that are….Sustainable!The new focus on business models is not only popular, it seems to be a powerful tool. SteveBlank‟s new (free) online Lean Launchpad course [Udacity] has already led to multiplesuccessful sustainable technology launches via NSF and entrepreneurs globally. In particular, theobsessive focus with creating value for stakeholders seems apt for social ventures. As social andsustainable entrepreneurs look toward this phenomenon, it is clear that there are equally powerfulimplications for them. However, it remains to be seen how those implications may differ. Let usgive a quick overview of the key constructs and the initial implications we see.What IS a Business Model?Business models are the „recipes‟ for how a venture becomes sustainable economically. Theytypically have three critical components: Value Identification – identifying genuine value desired by customers and/or otherstakeholders (that is, in their eyes, not the entrepreneur‟s) Value Delivery – figuring out how to deliver that value, once identified, to intendrecipients Value Capture – if significant value is identified and delivered, rents accrue to theventure (and other stakeholders) i.e., who gets paid and how? The venture‟s revenue model(s)are usually at the heart of this.A successful ventures needs to develop all three, almost always iteratively. The interplay of thethree also is most likely to evolve, making this a seemingly most complex process. Also note that“sustainable” is easily extended to social and environmental sustainability. Makes the process 3
  4. 4. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297still more complex on the surface but actually offers increased opportunities to design a viableventure.It’s Not a Bug, It’s a FeatureThe „lean startup‟ approach takes this complexity as an advantage (Ries 2011). The only way tobuild a great business model is to ruthlessly identify every possible assumption that underpinsthe model, drilling down as deeply as possible – then testing each assumption equally ruthlesslyand rigorously. If the assumption passes muster, then proceed; if not, „pivot‟ [adapt yourbusiness model].Two things of relevance for us: First, the business model will change dramatically (and swiftly),hence the business model is far less important than its evolution (Gunzel & Krueger, 2012).Second, the lean model appears to be closely associated with the expert entrepreneurial mindset(hence it has big implications for entrepreneurial learning). Both are essential for movingforward with social ventures and sustainability.Existing business model research has tended to quite static, focusing on different characteristicsof business models and tends to come from a more organization theory and strategy perspective;however, this is a supervenient process - dynamic, bottom-up, nonlinear. This suggests thatsocial entrepreneurship researchers have a certain advantage. More important, it means thisapproach is all but necessary for practitioners.Interesting Specifics for Research (and Practice)“MVP”: A key concept of the lean startup is the “MVP” or “Minimum Viable Product”. Itbuilds on the reality that successful ventures launch “too early.” (If you are not embarrassed laterby your MVP, you waited too long.) Fail early, fail fast, learn even faster.However, failing early can have very different implications to someone fighting disease orhunger than to someone launching a cool web app. Paul Hudnut has been vocal about the needfor us to dig more deeply into what “MVP” needs to look like in high-risk, high-stakes settings.This is a golden opportunity for researchers in social & sustainable entrepreneurship. 4
  5. 5. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297“Pivot”: Similarly, the notion of pivots is an arena where social entrepreneurship researchers cancontribute. In a social venture, pivots can be extremely difficult given institutional andstakeholder pressures. It is rare that we can manage a true randomized field experiment in ourdomain, despite the enormous advantages of using them (Kistruck 2011)In sustainability, what we might focus on profitably are pivots at the system level, echoing BillDrayton‟s mantra of “re-inventing the whole fishing industry.” (Or why we invited Bill to joinus!)Design Thinking: A cliché, we know but as entrepreneurs we know that creating a viableventure is not an optimization problem, it is a design problem. With the complexity of a ventureamplified by the added complexity of triple bottom line sustainability, design thinking isimperative. However, it needs to be tested rigorously. (The Stanford D-School is looking at thisright now, as is Andrew Hargadon at UC-Davis.)In sum, we lack rigorous research into business model evolution. Entire tracks on businessmodels were featured at recent European entrepreneurship conferences and it is clear that –because of their constraints - social entrepreneurs may well be the ideal venue to explorebusiness model evolution. Nor would it be excessively optimistic to argue that the practicalimpact will be higher as well. But to do great research, great teaching and great outreach, ourscholars and educators need to really understand lean startup, etc. and internalize it – here‟s howwe will do that.FocusWe focus here on the absolute cutting edge of business modeling tools, primarily the dominantlean startup model. However, to truly “get it”, we need to experience it first-hand, hands-on andguided by top experts. 5
  6. 6. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297The first “Sustaining the Sustainable” AoM workshop was in 1999 and it crystallized thinkingfor many of us that this is important for teaching, important for outreach, important for researchand… .important for the future.Sponsor RationalesWhy TTC?Shouldn‟t perhaps the single best set of tools available to teach and train entrepreneurs beavailable to Academy members, especially those working with social ventures andsustainability? We already know that social entrepreneurship scholars are eager for these tools,not just for the impact on entrepreneur and the implications for great research but also for itspower as a teaching tool. The result of this PDW will be Academy scholars and educatorsleaving fully familiar with the key elements of a powerful tool kit for developing businessmodels that are triple bottom line sustainable.Why PTC?This PDW brings together perhaps the top minds in social and sustainable entrepreneurshipcurrently engaged deeply in working with social and sustainable entrepreneurs globally withworld class expertise at business modeling, especially the lean startup approach. The result ofthis PDW will be Academy scholars and educators leaving fully familiar with the key elementsof a powerful tool kit for developing business models that are triple bottom line sustainable.Why ENT?Back in 1999, ENT and ONE co-sponsored a preconference workshop entitled “Sustaining theSustainable” – two of the presenters are co-organizers of this PDW. ENT has always been afriendly, supportive home for social entrepreneurship and sustainability and has alwayschampioned engaged scholarship. This PDW brings together practitioner-engaged scholars andpractical tools that we all need to learn more about. The result of this PDW will be Academyscholars and educators leaving fully familiar with the key elements of a powerful tool kit fordeveloping business models that are triple bottom line sustainable.Why ONE? 6
  7. 7. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Back in 1999, ONE [and ENT] co-sponsored a preconference workshop entitled “Sustaining theSustainable” – two of the presenters are co-organizers of this PDW. ONE has always been afriendly, supportive home for sustainable entrepreneurship and has always championed engagedscholarship. This PDW brings together practitioner-engaged scholars and practical tools that weall need to learn more about. The result of this PDW will be Academy scholars and educatorsleaving fully familiar with the key elements of a powerful tool kit for developing businessmodels that are triple bottom line sustainable.Why TIM?TIM has long been a strong voice for sustainability and for engaged scholarship. The result ofthis PDW will be Academy scholars and educators leaving fully familiar with the key elementsof a powerful tool kit for developing business models that are triple bottom line sustainable.Why IM?The IM Division has increasingly sought to promote sustainability as part of an increasinglyglobal world. The lean startup model has become a lingua franca for entrepreneurs and potentialentrepreneurs globally. Put those together and we realize the value of exposing sustainabilityscholars and educators to the bleeding edge of business modeling. The result of this PDW will beAcademy scholars and educators leaving fully familiar with the key elements of a powerful toolkit for developing business models that are triple bottom line sustainable.Also: Why Strategic Doing Initiative?The creation of this new AoM initiative tells us that we need to re-double our efforts towardhighly actionable projects where activities such as PDWs yield tangible, visible, productiveaction. The result of this PDW will be Academy scholars and educators leaving fully familiarwith the key elements of a powerful tool kit for developing business models that are triplebottom line sustainable. 7
  8. 8. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Format(15 minutes) Brief overview and introductions [slides, etc. will be sent out in advance](60 minutes) Hands-on experiential workshop led by one of the world‟s top consultants, Trevor Owens whose Lean Startup Machine marries the lean startup tool kit to the Startup Weekend immersion approach. Trevor will be supported by several experienced, trained experts on business modeling (Forster, Günzel, Krueger, Kumar)(30 minutes) Implications for teaching and practice – facilitated discussion (Kickul, Kumar, Walske)(30 minutes) Implications for research – facilitated discussion (Forster, Günzel, Krueger, Park)(15 minutes) Wrapup and Action Items [nobody leaves without a public commitment to action] Suggests a 2.5 hour session (3 hours would give us more discussion time; 2 hours is doable, of course)Audience TakeawaysPre-registrants (and others, as feasible) will get a bleeding-edge tool kit of resources that willboth prepare them for the PDW and also be directly applicable to their work back home. Thistool kit and training would normally be relatively costly (but it‟s important to sustainability thatwe are making this effort.)Audience members will take away a deeper insight in how and why to use these tools and weanticipate that the experiential learning will provide specific insights for their own critical issues.Audience members will also see the remarkable array of research issues that can be uniquelyaddressed at the intersection of business modeling and social/sustainable entrepreneurship.We also hope to build a community of practice around all this; this must not be a one-off event(no matter how much fun we will be having). 8
  9. 9. Proposal for Professional Development Workshop #15297Key Organizers 1. Dr. Franziska Günzel, Aarhus University, Denmark, rising scholar and educator in entrepreneurship, leads Business Modeling group for Aarhus entrepreneurial community 2. Dr. Jill Kickul, NYU, New York, perhaps the leading program developer in social entrepreneurship, also cutting edge educator and scholar of social entrepreneurship 3. Dr. Norris Krueger, Entrepreneurship Northwest, experienced researcher and global expert on developing entrepreneurial mindsets and ecosystems, Startup Weekend organizer and veteran lean startup consultant, ID. 4. Dr. Jacob Park, Green Mountain College, experienced sustainability researcher (both theoretical & applied), social and environmental innovation & entrepreneurship with special expertise/interest in emerging economies, chair of U.S. Sustainable & Responsible Investment Forum‟s International Working Group Steering Committee, VT 5. Jennifer Walske, UC Berkeley, Director of Social Entrepreneurship, experienced in venture finance and impact investment and rising star in social entrepreneurshipKey Participants 6. Mr. Trevor Owens, founder of the Lean Startup Machine (the #1 lean startup bootcamp) 7. Dr. Florian Forster, visiting scholar at Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley; certified Lean LaunchPad trainer, co-founder of entrepreneurship centers at two universities, social entrepreneurship dissertation, California/Germany 8. Dr. Suresh Kumar, founder of an Inc. 500 sustainable venture (GreenEarth), trained lean startup trainer (and Startup Weekend mentor) and entrepreneurship policy scholar, US/India.Invited Participants/Discussants [potentially via video] 9. Dr Alex Osterwalder, Business Model Generation, author of the Business Model Canvas [the guy who built the tool kit we will use], Switzerland 10. Mr. Bill Drayton, founder of Ashoka and still a top thought leader in social entrepreneurship. 11. Mr. Tom Park, United States CTO (joint practitioner-academe-government projects), DC 12. Ms. Leah Nichols, AAAS/NSF project lean public policy development, DC 13. Mr. Franck Nouryigat, co-founder of Startup Weekend, director of Startup Weekend Research, Seattle/France. 9

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