Author(s): Mario Vázquez-Maguirre
The current global problems that humanity is facing urge academics to rethink modern organizations and explore strategies that generate better outcomes for society. One alternative management approach that has actively sought this purpose is humanist management. This approach has the potential to remedy social injustices and dignity-violations as organizations adapt different humanistic practices and strategies towards these ends. Simultaneously, indigenous entrepreneurship is a growing area of interest for scholars because it has the potential to address urgent social issues (e.g. poverty, marginalization, exclusion, etc.) from a different managerial perspective and set of values. One of the outcomes that makes this possible is how these communities respect and protect human dignity through their enterprises. This article explores how indigenous entrepreneurship contributes to restore, protect, and promote human dignity from a humanistic management approach. Based on evidence from three cases located in Latin America, the results suggest different strategies that indigenous enterprises create and implement depending on the dignity threshold they need to address. The findings contribute to unveil the mechanisms and strategies that can revalue humanism and human dignity from an entrepreneurial and managerial perspective. As these indigenous enterprises are distant from traditional entrepreneurial principles and values, they represent a valuable new perspective that could shed light on how to improve current theories and strategies to generate better outcomes for society. This work also contributes to indigenous entrepreneurship literature by exploring how different indigenous communities naturally create humanistic-oriented enterprises to address dignity violations and generate wellbeing.