Zheng (Stefanie) Chai Headshot

Research Topic

Social enterprise: the challenges of resourcing, measurement and governance dimension

Research Summary

Social enterprises are becoming significant within the global economic system. The essence of social enterprises to address the gaps in society by performing in the third sector as non-profit organisations, generally financed and regulated by public bodies, plays a crucial role in the provision of social services. In addition, social enterprises are established for social missions rather than profit. The hybrid nature of social enterprises, whose main objective is to provide social value, must also create economic wealth in order to remain viable and sustainable. The purpose of my research is to understand how to advance social enterprise from several perspectives based on empirical research that uses a combination method of case study and interview. These perspectives concern the resourcing, measurement and governance dimensions of social enterprise.

Research Area

Research Taxonomy


After I watched a TED show, it seemed to me that the world will be changed through the impact of social enterprise. Professor Michael Porter of Harvard Business School, believes the biggest social issues could be solved by social enterprise. This idea has inspired me and led my desire to pursue my PhD. I have accomplished a BSc (Hons) in Accounting and Finance and an MSc in Finance. This interdisciplinary background allows me to provide fresh perspectives in order to advance our understanding of social enterprises. I will perform my research primarily in Edinburgh but may also interview some Asian-based social enterprises.