Yesterday there was a meeting of the minds to discuss the future of social entrepreneurship. One tweet at a time.Ashoka Changemakers hosted a live tweet chat, #SocEntChat, which brought together thinkers from organizations such as Kiva, Ashoka, Agora Ventures, Echoing Green, Centre for Social Innovation NY, and a number of others, as well as bloggers, thinkers, company representatives, and practitioners in the area.Here are the questions posed and a few memorable tweets from the chat.  The snapshot below is by no means comprehensive, but gives a peek into the global conversation and dialogue about social innovation happening today.


Q1. What resources are available to help people create long-term careers in social entrepreneurship? What else is needed?
Q1. People in the sector are best resources, and seem to like coffee :) Buy them one and pick their brain. 
A1 also has an extensive resource list of competitions &  
A1. But  itself isn’t really a long-term career. Really, we’re talking about thousands of diff careers connected to it 
A1. Clear definitions of concepts are needed to develop a field of research. Less important but useful in practice. 
A1  It is a struggle making that transition from idea to career. Less than 1% get into programs like 
A1 I decided to start giving away free  training at to help people build sustainable programs
In blogging on  issues, resources re:  and programs are sought-after.  
50+ Fellowship Programs for Social Innovators …. Accelerator Programs  
Corporates can be investors in , supporters w resources & talent. Our corp partners have provided incredible brain power!


A1. Follow a calling. Even if you happen to stumble upon it. Each of us has the capacity to make big change & be changemakers
Q2. What role does the corporate sector play in offering opportunities for social innovation? Should it be doing more?
Corporates can be investors in , supporters w resources & talent. Our corp partners have provided incredible brain power!
A2 the corp sector has an opportunity to move beyond CSR and integrate meaning making deeply into their culture. 
A2: Corporate sector can be major attention amplifiers – and (harder) can invite socially oriented innovation into their domain 
A2: Being able to quantify value of  to corporations would help to further the reach & work of –make must v. should
A2. Demand for  shift from employees & consumers is powerful.  401K options, green consumer optns offer choice 
A2: Corporations have INCREDIBLE resources to invest in innovation. Key finding corporate rebels to change the systems 
A2:  combines social impact w/ biz pragmatism at Accenture. Corporate rebels exist!  
A2. Within a corp one can create a structure for Team of Teams that create and collaborate. A space for idea-buidling cc 
A2: All employees can be changemakers – no need for a trade-off between PURPOSE and PROFIT  
A2. True success can be achieved when you have “win-win” situations for the corporations and social entrepreneurs


Q3. How can we evaluate the impact of social entrepreneurs to ensure that social value is still the foundation of their work?
Q3: Knowing what to measure and how to measure it is still one of the biggest  challenges. Is it a number, or a smile?


. A3: Kiva looks at how much borrowers’ incomes have increased after loans & how they compare region wide


. A3: Kiva has 20+ Fellows in the field gathering stories and interviewing borrowers all the time 


A3. the introduction of social value act in UK is going to make have to get much better at demonstrating social value


 A3: Patient capital is key. Be prepared to accept repeated small losses; a single payoff often more than makes up.


A3: Martin Seligman’s PERMA equation might be part of the answer. 


Often see impact metrics fall to wayside as  chase funding (due to diff funder priorities) – need to educate funders 2.


A3. One thing we’ll have to let go of is the idea of common standards. We seek consistency but the world is dynamic & relative


Think we also need to demystify what  is – move away from warm&fuzzy & towards viable impact-driven biz 


 SocEnt is not Charity or NGO. The moment you decide to use “Ent” you decided on one metric: sustainability i.e. profits.


A3. We are entering into a big data phase of tech evolution. Organizing/analyzing data can help validate  initiatives.


A3. Being vision/mission driven sets the intention. Creating measuring tools, goals, deadlines puts in motion.  etc. help
 can totally use the lean startup. both to measure & support projects & ventures. small experiments, rapid prototype. 
Q3: Impact should not be oversimplified (ie # of people taken out of poverty), it should involve complex things like process 
A3 make IRIS metrics mean something tangible to funders. 


Q4. : White women, on average, earn 77 cents to a man’s dollar; black women earn 69 cents and Latinas earn 57 cents. 1/2
Q4. Given these stats, how can  be a powerful path with unique opportunities, access points and benefits for ? 2/2




Q4. Women are able to empower other women, take on leadership roles and prioritize issues they consider important as 


Q4. UK stats show 86% of socent leadership teams boast at least one female director vs. 59% in private sector 


A4 great essay last year on economic empowerment leading to social empowerment from grameenphone founder 


A4. It starts at the neighborhood level. We solve problems by first getting to know our neighbors and communities. 


A4: Young people should know they can be changemakers ANYWHERE – working at big consulting firms or running their own ventures 


Q4. Women statistically reinvest in their communities more than men allows them to contribute in new ways eg microcredit


. A4: When you help women make their own money you promote gender equality, later marriage, education + more


A4: Mentoring, support networks & building community for women have worked in some ways to stronger apps for our Fellowship.


A4 great essay last year on economic empowerment leading to social empowerment from grameenphone founder 


 A4: Be Bold. Collaborate. Innovate. See Solutions where other see problems.


Q5. Should governments and political leaders be responsible for helping to facilitate the growth of social entrepreneurship?


  A5. Not exclusively,but enabling a supportive ecosystem is a necessity. They play a key role in removing barriers.


A5: Governments & politicians need to realize that crowd funding for social enterprise is powerful & here to stay 


A5 Absolutely.  will not thrive with advocates from any one sector, region or class. Everyone has a role to play 


Q5: the  space is very new and needs to be nimble. Government/political intrusion could hurt the space. 

A5: Public sector innovation can mirror private/social sector innovation. Again, connecting all stakeholders… 


A5. Governments in developing countries would help  best by developing a favourable environment for all enterprises.


Q5: Entrepreneurship usually thrives during economic hard times. So screwing up the economy could be government’s contribution?


A5: Gov’t should demand accountability and ensure cost reimbursed by enterprises that create the poverty & pollution 


A5: Govt represents huge platform for $$$, resources & rules of the game. Having govt alligned is huge factor.  


A5. We are all responsible of making positive change in our communities 


Q6. What will the world look like 25 years from now, when social innovation is business as usual? Is that a realistic future?


A6: World I’d like to see in 25 years is… 1. Sustainable 2. Empathetic and 3. A global changemaking community 


A6   25 yrs=75% of world will know of socent. 100 yrs=socent will be obsolete. All biz will be social.


A6.The best way to predict the future is to create it, so let’s stop rearranging the chairs and get busy making new furniture!!


A6: We want a world where EVERY women is a Changemaker – it’s feasible if girls are given the resources to innovate 


A6: In 25 years, global governance will be much more citizen-led, diplomats will need new jobs 


 A6 our hope and one of our fave quote business will be about “sharing the market not market share”


A6. 3BottomLine accounting would be the norm in a  future. Normalised impact accounting practices doable in 25 years?


A6 We already have intrapreneurs taking us , in 25 years time I hope creating profit with purpose will be common place


A6: We want a world where EVERY women is a Changemaker – it’s feasible if girls are given the resources to innovate 
A6: In 25 yrs, there will be solar everywhere, gender equality will be the norm & credit will be accessible to 1B more 

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