STEP Survey 2018-19 theme: 

“Impact of changing demographics on succession and governance”

With people living longer, the traditional methods of transition and governance in family businesses are no longer appropriate.  This research will look to explore and articulate how business families are dealing with these issues and what succession and governance models could look like in the modern era.


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STEP Research Cases 2019 

The STEP research cases are due December 15, 2019.  

PREMISE OF STUDY:   As with the 2019 STEP Survey, the overarching aim of the case studies is to explore impacts of changing demographics on succession and firm performance. This collection of qualitative data will explore how family businesses are dealing with this issue and what practice in succession and governance looks like in the modern era.  The STEP teams will research the following issues:  i. Differences in generational outlook; ii. Retirement planning; iii. Gender and societal change; and iv. Unexpected succession.

STEP members can download the 2019 STEP Case Guidelines in the STEP portal.  For more information, contact Val Duffy, STEP Assistant Director.


STEP by the Numbers

family business research cases
family businesses surveyed
journal articles based on STEP data
books published based on STEP data

Successful Transgenerational Entrepreneurship PracticesSTEP

Founded in 2005 by Babson College in collaboration with six academic affiliates in Europe, the STEP Project is a global applied research initiative that explores the entrepreneurial process within business families and generates solutions that have immediate application for family leaders. The visionary institutions that founded the project include ESADE (Spain), HEC (France), Jönköping International Business School (Sweden), Universita Bocconi (Italy), Universitat St. Gallen (Switzerland), Universitat Witten/Herdecke (Germany), and Babson College (USA).

Professor James Davis, Utah State University, talks about the benefits of joining STEP Project for Family Enterprising.

See What's Happening /News and Events


FBR Best Article Awarded to STEP members

May 8, 2019
This year’s “best article award” for the Family Business Review (FBR) was awarded to Frank Barbera (Univ. of Adelaide), Isabell Stamm (Technical University of Berlin), […]


Learn Why the Case Method as a Learning Tool Helps Us Understand the Wicked Problems Facing Family Businesses

May 8, 2019
Case studies provide an opportunity to help learners better understand (and ultimately deal with) the difficulties, complexity, and inter-relatedness associated with “wicked” family business problems. […]


EU STEP Meeting & EIASM STEP Award!

May 7, 2019
The STEP EU Research Champion, Kathleen Randerson and the hard working STEP team at Audencia Business School, Nantes France, have organized a great program as […]



EU Academic Workshop and Meeting (in conjunction with EIASM)

May 22 – 23, 2019

Audencia Business School, Nantes, France

Click here fore details.

STEP Latin American Academic Workshop and Meeting

This STEP Latin American (LA) meeting will be carried out in two ways: Presential and/or virtual.   

This event will take place prior to FERC in Burlington VT, on May 29, 2019.

The goal of workshop is to produce successful research outputs.

For more details click here.

STEP Global Academic Workshop and Meeting

May 30, 2019 (prior to FERC)

Burlington, Vermont

Click here for more details

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STEP Project

Leading academics and business families from around the world have joined as partners of the STEP Project to explore Successful Transgenerational Entrepreneurship Practices and create a stream of powerful practices and cases that empower families to build their entrepreneurial legacies.


The STEP Project for Family Enterprising is the first global research study to focus on entrepreneurship in business families.

Photo of 2016 STEP global conference attendees