Keywords: Ecuador, community-based entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship, environmental sustainability, biodiversity, ecology, resource management, Fundacion Maquipucuna, entrepreneurial organisations, non-profit organisations, Choco-Andes, cacao trees, coffee production, ecotourism, tourism, plastic thatch manufacture, crops, agriculture, sustainable development, ecological environments, biodiverse hotpots, sustainability initiatives, litre-government agencies, for-profit structures, community engagement, regional development, Afro-Ecuadorian people, business, globalisation
Fundacion Maquipucuna: an entrepreneurial Ecuadorian non-profit organisation
The purpose of this paper is to describe Fundacion Maquipucuna's community-based entrepreneurship activities. Fundacion Maquipucuna is a unique non-profit organisation in the Choco-Andes region of Ecuador. An ethnographic study and review of the literature is conducted to analyse the cacao, coffee, ecotourism and plastic thatch enterprises of Fundacion Maquipucuna. The enterprises Fundacion Maquipucuna is engaged in support the ongoing sustainability of the biodiverse ecological environment in the Choco-Andes region, which is one of the top five biodiverse hotspots in the world. On a global scale, more emphasis is being placed on promoting sustainability initiatives to preserve the environment. This paper discusses how a litre-government agency Fundacion Maquipucuna is changing from a non-profit to a for-profit structure in order to continue its community engagement projects. This paper integrates the social and community-based entrepreneurship literature to discuss how Fundacion Maquipucuna is engaging in innovative regional development that benefits the whole Choco-Andes community including the large Afro-Ecuadorian population.