Assistant Professor in Social Entrepreneurship
Dr Sheila Cannon
01 896 3850
Sheila is Assistant Professor of Social Entrepreneurship at Trinity Business School, from where she also was awarded her PhD. Sheila teaches Social Entrepreneurship to Undergraduate and MBA students, as well as teaching Personal and Career Development. Her research looks at organisational identity work, how organisations engage in self-reflection on who they are when faced with significant change.
Sheila has worked in non-profit organisations since 1998, mostly in the area of International Peacebuilding. After serving as Director of Programmes and Director of Development in international peacebuilding organisations (1999-2012), she returned to academia to complete her PhD on non-profit organisations and how they adapt to change.
Sheila obtained her BA in The Classics from Vassar College, USA, in 1998, and her PhD from Trinity College Dublin in 2014. She was awarded the Gabriel G. Rudney Memorial Award for Outstanding Dissertation in Nonprofit and Voluntary Action Research in 2015. Her research interests focus on non-profits, organisational identity work, and deinstitutionalisation.
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Sheila is interested in the tensions in nonprofits as they ask themselves: are we a business or are we a community? And are those two identities mutually exclusive? Social entrepreneurship happens when organisations try to balance social and commercial goals, which can take place seamlessly, or result in conflict. Social enterprises often set out to bring about social change, but also must find ways of being sustainable, and continuing to deliver on their mission.
Sheila provides thought leadership on the non-profit sector in Ireland, particularly the organisations involved in peacebuilding. She also is interested in corporate activism, when businesses take on social issues.
- Organisational Identity Work
- Organisational Change
1. Sheila M. Cannon, Legitimacy as Property and Process: The Case of an Irish LGBT Organization, VOLUNTAS: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, 2019 Journal Article, 2019 DOI URL
2. Cannon M. Sheila; Karin Kreutzer, Mission Accomplished? Organizational Identity Work in response to Mission Success, Human Relations, 71, (9), 2018, p1234 - 1263 Journal Article, 2018 URL DOI
3. Donnelly-Cox, G; S. Cannon; J. Harrison, Ireland Country Report: Eufori Study. European Foundations for Research and Innovation, Brussels, Belgium, European Commission, 2015, 597-634 Report, 2015 URL