What a whirlwind of the past few weeks. (and horrible internet connection…)
- London – SHINE Unconference (for social entrepreneurs – yes, this was insight for our unconference held last month;)
- Outside London – Family holidaying 🙂
- Rotterdam – met folks at Enviu yesterday!
- The Hague – now for Crossing Boundaries (education for sustainability conference with UNESCO people)
Recapping one post at a time…
SHINE UNCONFERENCE RECAP
🙂 Met amazing people doing wonderful work all around the world. From assisting local social entrepreneurs in Portugal, to eco-fashion & lingerie, to massaging kids in school to let away with aggression, to the many service providers out there for social entrepreneurs – HUB, financing, accounting, video, social media, consulting, labs, lean startup – lots of great companies/ideas cropping up and was glad to be in the centre of it for a while.
😦 “Social entrepreneurship” as a term is LIMITING.
Social entrepreneurs have great ideals but they’re dangerously putting themselves into a box that is just too small. The term “social entrepreneurship” tends to connote small-scale/don’t make too much money/give back part of your profits etc. thinking. One guy even asked a question along these lines and the panel just ignored the question! Absurd. I met too many people that worked their asses off without compensating themselves enough to even pay for the trip to the conference. Entrepreneurial people, if allowed to grow and exit a venture, can have so much more impact if they continued to push forward new ideas. (Put other ways, it’s hard to be a serial social entrepreneur if you don’t have an exit plan for one idea.) The financing is generally smaller because it’s risky to invest in a company that isn’t aiming to because they’re looking out for the social good, There’s this idea out there that if you grow – and god forbid, become corporate – in any way –you’re no longer doing a good thing. I just don’t buy it.
My big question:
WHERE ARE THE CLEANTECH STARTUPS IN SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP? WHERE ARE THE INDUSTRY-SHAKING MOVERS THAT WE NEED TO TRANSFROM OUR WORLD? They weren’t at Shine.
So, even in Academia, I tend to stay away from the term social entrepreneurship (although it’s a hot topic in today’s literature…) and instead focus on sustainability-driven entrepreneurship. That way, you don’t exclude the growth oriented startups that are aiming for the same general purpose of putting our society on a more sustainable track
With the help of a certain “sea urchin”, we practiced a new facilitation method about putting ourselves into action –by next week. Very cool method with some interesting results. Stay tuned.
But all in all, my London trip was just lovely. I shall return…hopefully soon. Perhaps even for a longer stay;)
See my video that i made at shine here
And with 30sec left of internet at 6€/hr…. I’ll try to add more links later!