Recent work linking social movements and organizations has shown that social movements can promote entrepreneurial activity in new industries. Social movements can increase acceptance of new industries among consumers, drum up state support, call entrepreneurs’ attention to new opportunities, connect entrepreneurs to resource providers, and promote the formation of supportive infrastructure. All of these actions facilitate new industry emergence and expansion. In this paper, we argue that when social movements successfully foster industry expansion, three related things happen. First, the movement-encouraged development of industry infrastructure reduces the need for continued support by social movements. Second, movements’ efforts on behalf of new industries increase the importance of resource availability: by improving opportunities to earn profits, entrepreneurs who are motivated more by financial considerations and less by movement ideologies are increasingly attracted to the industry; for such instrumentally motivated entrepreneurs, resources are more important than movement support. Third, industry growth motivates counter movements that compete with initiator movements, further reducing the beneficial impact of imitator movements. To test these arguments, we use panel data on the US wind power industry and related social movements. We conclude by considering the implications of our findings for the study of social movements, organizations, and entrepreneurship.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/brandon_lee/6/