Shaping conditions for entrepreneurship in climate change adaptation: A case study of an emerging governance arrangement in the Netherlands

Debora de Block, Peter H. Feindt, Erik van Slobbe*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Planning and implementation of regional climate change adaptation requires new, integrated governance arrangements that often involve public and private actors. Although entrepreneurship is widely considered an important part of such arrangements, little is known about the conditions that enable it, and its actual role is under-researched. Through an in-depth case study of an ecosystem-based adaptation project in the Netherlands, we have analyzed how the variegated actors in a governance network shape six conditions for entrepreneurial success, established in the entrepreneurship literature. Through a framing analysis, we found that all six conditions, i.e., prior career experience, altruistic motivations, financial motives, social networks, financial capital availability, and policies and regulations, were the object of constant negotiations. Their salience varied during the project as a result of variegated framing practices. In the early stages, issue, identity, and relationship frames were used to create a network of people with a range of relevant experience, connected by altruistic motivations. However, as the project progressed, distrust frames and different spatial-and temporal-scale frames created tensions between public and private actors. Accordingly, process frames, financial motivations, and capital availability became increasingly salient, reflecting the need to consolidate rules, roles, and responsibilities. The findings suggest that approaches to climate change adaptation imply ongoing struggles over the conditions that enable entrepreneurial success. We thereby add an important new dimension to the study of adaptation governance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number19
JournalEcology and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2019


  • Climate change
  • Ecosystem-based adaptation
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Governance arrangements

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Shaping conditions for entrepreneurship in climate change adaptation: A case study of an emerging governance arrangement in the Netherlands'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this