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The Potential of Social Business in Austria

The study titled “The Potential of Social Business in Austria” was conducted by the WU Vienna in the first half of 2015.

The main goal was to estimate the approximate number of social businesses/social enterprises currently established in Austria as well as the future potential of this sector. Furthermore, important fields of operation and potential impact were identified.

After the establishment of a working definition of the term “social business”, three existing quantitative datasets were (re-)analysed in order to determine the size and scope of the respective sector in Austria, resulting in an approximate range of 1200-2000 organizations.

Important fields of activity include social services, education and environment. Qualitative interviews with various experts contributed to the validation of the working definition with respect to the Austrian context and to make projections about the future development. Most of the experts interviewed expected growth both in the number and economic importance of social businesses. Additionally, a categorization of types of social businesses allowed for a more differentiated image of the sector and the assessment of impact potentials.


MMag. Reinhard Millner

Senior Researcher
Manager of the Social Entrepreneurship Center

Tel.: +43 1 313 36/5887
E-Mail: reinhard.millner@wu.ac.at

Dr. Peter Vandor, MIM (CEMS)

Senior Researcher
Manager of the Social Entrepreneurship Center

Tel.: +43 1 313 36/4594
E-Mail: peter.vandor@wu.ac.at 

Clara Maria Moder MSc


Tel.: +43 1 313 36/4349
E-Mail: clara.maria.moder@wu.ac.at