To participate, families must:

  • be considered a mid- to large-sized business family who have at least one core operating company in their portfolio of businesses and investments;
  • have at least two generations involved in the ownership/management of the family business;
  • own at least 50% of the voting shares of the business;
  • should intend to pass the business on to the next generation of family members

If families agree to participate in the STEP Project, families must allow researchers to conduct a confidential analysis of their business family, as well as family members and managers will have to fill out a survey.

Participants families will receive a feedback report and access to the ongoing results from the study. They are also invited to exclusive events, including annual regional Summits with other families who are participating in the study.

Families participate in the STEP Project through an academic at a regional university, but they have access to the expertise, networking and results from a global network of institutions.


Families who participate in the STEP Project experience a wide range of benefits, including:

  • Leading-edge involvement in a global project that is generating knowledge on how families establish entrepreneurial legacies for wealth creation.
  • Personalized connection to a regional university program that has research and education activities focusing on family business growth and continuity.
  • Priority access to research results with personal application to your family business and professional interpretation by research experts.
  • Peer benchmarking with families from countries worldwide through research reports and participation in STEP Activities.
  • Exclusive participation in STEP regional and global Summits and access to other educational activities resulting from STEP Project research results.​

“I learned a lot from the experiences of the family businesses who participated in the Summit. The similarity in the values that we all share was especially interesting to me.”

—Peter Pohlmann