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The hybridity of corporate foundations in the spotlight

In a newly published academic article in the journal Voluntas, Theresa Gehringer, PhD student at the CEPS, explores why corporate foundations (CFs) are often referred to as «hybrid organizations». In many academic and practitioner publications, the word «hybrid » is used to describe a CF's position between business and civil society and its multiple interconnections with its founding organization. Until now, however, there has been confusion about which characteristics of a CF lead to such a description.

Based on 80 publications from over 30 countries worldwide, this study shows that a total of 15 characteristics can be used to describe CFs. The interaction of these characteristics leads to different patterns of hybridity – on strategic, organizational and contextual levels. The results of the study contribute to a better understanding of the existing diversity of CFs, especially their hybrid character.

The publication of the study in open access was made possible thanks to the University of Basel.

Read article (open access): doi.org/10.1007/s11266-021-00318-w