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The Green Entrepreneur: Visionary, Maverick or Opportunist?


  • David W. Taylor

    (Manchester Metropolitan University Business School)

  • Liz E. E. Walley

    (Manchester Metropolitan University Business School)


Given the importance of green entrepreneurs in the transition towards a truly sustainable society, this paper proposes frameworks for investigating the motives of entrepreneurs who set up green businesses. Different perceptions of 'green' are explored and although the paper focuses particularly on 'green-green' businesses, the scope for investigation encompasses all possible forms of green start-ups. The main approach taken in the paper is to review the literature on entrepreneurs generally, and approaches to classifying entrepreneurs with a view to gaining useful insights for the green context. An exploratory typology of green entrepreneurs is proposed, which has been adapted and developed from Thompson's four dimensions of entrepreneurship (1998). The terms 'ethical maverick', 'ad hoc environpreneur', 'visionary champion' and 'innovative opportunist' are coined to describe different motives or orientations of the green entrepreneur. Frameworks are proposed to investigate the motives of, and influences on, green entrepreneurs. The ultimate aim is to gain insights for policy makers and educators into ways to foster green entrepreneurship.

Suggested Citation

  • David W. Taylor & Liz E. E. Walley, 2003. "The Green Entrepreneur: Visionary, Maverick or Opportunist?," Microeconomics 0307002, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpmi:0307002
    Note: Type of Document - Acrobat PDF; prepared on IBM PC; to print on HP laserjet 1200; pages: 22; figures: included in document. This Paper is part of the working paper series of the Manchester Metropolitan University Business School, United Kingdom.

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Stepanenko, Bohdana, 2010. "Концептуальні Підходи До Визначення Поняття "Зелений Бізнес"
      [Methodology features and problems of definition of the term «green business»]
      ," MPRA Paper 41117, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    entrepreneurship; sustainability; green; start-ups; motivation; typology;

    JEL classification:

    • D00 - Microeconomics - - General - - - General

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