Areas of Social Entrepreneurship: Mapping the Social Enterprise Space
When I returned home from the Social Enterprise Alliance (SEA) conference in San Fransisco this spring the notion of mapping the space of social enterprise was high on my priority list, as that priority was mentioned in one of the plenary presentations. I did an industry breakdown then, but here is my latest:
1) Micro loans and international development
2) Innovation, Product Development, Strategy, Marketing for emerging markets & the BOP (IT and non-IT based)
3) Green business and sustainability (sustainable sourcing & green products, consulting, training, energy innovation, and energy efficiency)
4) Training for minority, vulnerable, and “disadvantaged” populations
5) K-12 Education (also public, private, charter, university, MA/PhD, internships/coops, fellowships, and various forms of professional certification and training)
6) Certification, association, and cooperative style social change
7) Strategic conduits (credibility, trust, and translation)
8] Democratize an industry (or niche of an industry) like health care, communications, or technology.
9) Lean organization (stop or curb waste–saves money and saves the environment)
10) Life and career counseling
11) Provision of vitally needed services to nonprofits
12) Buy one, give one (a la Toms Shoes–this model is very applicable in the web application and “software as service” space (cloud computing apps). For instance Google and Salesforce are famous for giving their products at a reduced cost or for free to select nonprofits–and I believe Microsoft does the same)
If you are interested in this post, you might also be interested in my twelve revenue models in social enterprise and resources for the base of the pyramid posts which highlights design models and innovative companies in the BOP space.
Hopefully these 3 posts can help map some of the conceptual business models and case studies in the social entrepreneurship space. I realize they don’t cover 100% of the field, so if you know of others feel free to leave a comment about other models for social innovation and social business in the comments section.
Also, if you have any questions about the models or social businesses, feel free to leave questions in the comments section. Thanks!