Tuesday, June 13, 2006

What's in a Name?

I realized today that I am still struggling with the definition of social entrepreneurship.

A few weeks ago, a fellow graduate student pointed out that by defining a social entrepreneur as someone with a mandate to make the world a better place as well as generating revenues, I was inviting interpretation of "making the world a better place."

For example, innovation in weapons for the defence of democracy could be seen as a positive social innovation.

I am thus struggling with the definition. Maybe I could broaden the understanding of "the world" in a more universal way; that is, saying that the social entrepreneur must not harm any others.

However, what of medicines that draw on scarce natural resources to heal millions of people from a disease?

I know I have not yet arrived at a definition that satisfies me.

I did, however, find helpful the Institute of Social Entrepreneurs' glossary.


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