Assessing the interplay between crowdfunding and sustainability in social media

PublicationArticle (with peer review)
Christian Sandström, Christofer Laurell, Crowdfunding, Företagandets villkor, Hållbarhet, Sociala medier, Yuliani Suseno


This paper aims to assess the degree to which sustainability-oriented dimensions are integrated within the public discourse on crowdfunding in social media. Utilizing Social Media Analytics (SMA), we track discussions on crowdfunding in user-generated content published in social media. Based on an empirical material of 141,754 user-generated content, we identify 308 entries (0.21 percent) explicitly or implicitly relating to sustainability and 80 percent of these 308 entries came from professional actors. In this material, 37 sustainability-oriented campaigns are identified and 26 of them (70 percent) received one entry. Taken together, this paper adds to previous literature by assessing and describing the seemingly minor role played by social media with regards to the interplay between crowdfunding and sustainability.

Laurell, C., Sandström, C. & Suseno, Y. (2019). Assessing the interplay between crowdfunding and sustainability in social media. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 141, 117-127. DOI: 10.1016/j.techfore.2018.07.015

Similar content

Directionality in Innovation Policy and The Ongoing Failure of Green Deals
Book chapterPublication
Sandström, C., & Alm, C.
Publication year


Published in

Questioning the Entrepreneurial State, 251.


Environmental policy is no longer only about imposing regulations onindustry. It is increasingly regarded as industrial policy. Both the European Union and national governments are taking more active roles in initiating green deals and various technologies aiming at sustainable development. In this chapter, we describe and discuss some recent experiences of green innovation policies. Historical examples concerning efforts in both biogas and ethanol are combined with a more contemporary description of fossil-free steel, i.e., steel made using hydrogen instead of coal. We argue that the presence of large public funds from different funding bodies such as the European Union, various government agencies, and municipalities has distorted incentives, making it rational for firms to pursue technologies without long-term potential. The result has been an absence of sustainable development, mounting debt, and financial problems for the actors involved. We explain these results and draw policy conclusions concerning the risks related to green deals. Relatedly, we argue that the European Union’s current efforts in hydrogen gas face similar challenges.

The chapter can be accessed here.

Digital innovation and the effects of artificial intelligence on firms’ research and development – Automation or augmentation, exploration or exploitation?
Article (with peer review)Publication
Johnson, P. C., Laurell, C., Ots, M., & Sandström, C.
Publication year


Published in

Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 179, 121636.


Digitalization has altered many assumptions underpinning research on innovation management. At the early innings of exploring how digital innovation management stands out, there is a need for further studies in this area. Previous research on how firms use artificial intelligence has distinguished between automation and augmentation of human activities. In this paper, we explore how firms implement artificial intelligence within research and development. Utilizing an international news database spanning 956 articles from 122 newspapers published in 2020, we find that artificial intelligence is primarily adopted to augment human activities (55%) within research and development, rather than to automate matters (11%). We observe differences across sectors where automation is more common in government, information and communication technology (ICT), and technology and software. Our systematic coding shows that artificial intelligence is primarily adopted for exploration research and development (64%), rather than exploitation (5%). Based on these findings, we conclude that research and development from artificial intelligence primarily focuses on novel markets and areas of operations, rather than enhancing existing product markets and activities. Moreover, it augments human labor rather than replaces it; hence, job losses related to artificial intelligence do not seem to be taking place within research and development.

The article in total can be read here.

Show more

Ratio is an independent research institute that researches how the conditions of entrepreneurship can be developed and improved.

Sveavägen 59 4trp

Box 3203

103 64 Stockholm

Bankgiro: 512-6578