Summary

The purpose with the Innovation implementation programme is to support researchers, innovators and social entrepreneurs to implement their ideas.

The RISE Centres (Research, Innovation and Social enterprising) aims at providing the conditions and the tools required for scientific researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs in Sub-Sahara African countries to implement their ideas through social enterprising.

Services

HR&S seek collaboration with the private sector, institutions and individuals to support our RISE Centres.

RISE Centres

Physical building providing enabling working conditions

The RISE Centresare physical buildings providing access to:
1. Workspace.
2. Training.
3. Coaching.
4. Networking.
5. Technical equipment.
6. Investment capita.

The Centres ensures transparency and accountability in ethics and governance.

Inviting change makers to become members

The RISE Centres invite social entrepreneurs, innovators and researchers to become members.

Justification

Social enterprising

Social Enterprises (SEs) are privately owned organisations—either for-profit, non-profit, or a hybrid of the two—that use business methods to advance their social objectives. They focus on maximising the social impact for their target beneficiaries in contract of maximizing the short-term profits for their shareholders and private owners. Due to their strong presence and understanding of local communities, SEs are often able to reach underserved populations through flexible and innovative business models. SEs offer employment, profit for the owner, services requested for by everyone, products requested for by everyone and tax to the government.

Where the environment is enabling, SEs can significantly contribute to development and this is the case in the European Union, where countries have explicit social entrepreneurship policies and support instruments and regulation, and evaluations demonstrate that public resources spent on provision of goods and services by SEs represent a more efficient, inclusive, and sustainable way of using resources than alternative methods. Consequently, governments and donors can benefit from fostering a strong SE sector integrated in the service delivery system.

 

State-of-the-art among social enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa

SEs in Africa obviously already address service delivery gaps. Indeed, Africa is one of the most vibrant and dynamic regional markets for social enterprises. While effective in reaching also the poor, SEs face significant obstacles in growing their activities to a scale where they can substantially contribute to the achievement of development impact. Therefore, a key question of development programmes, research and policy is how best to identify and remove these obstacles. Lack of robust institutional infrastructure and financial and capacity building support available (especially in the early stages) among other aspects, which have hindered the progress of social enterprises, with only a few success-stories of operational scale-up and corresponding increase in development impact.

Although positive examples abound, SEs have not yet fully realized their potential in Sub-Saharan Africa. Many SEs struggle to scale-up and develop sustainable business models. SEs face high barriers that are often aggravated by the difficult markets they serve. Common challenges include i) unconducive regulation and policy, ii) lack of financing solutions, iii) weak infrastructure and human capital, and iv) lack of information and networks (refers to HR&S RISE manager surveys). In addition, SEs are not organized as a sector and fall between traditionally recognized public and private organisations. The public sector often does not play a catalytic role, in terms of creating a conducive regulatory environment, encouraging greater transparency, and taking steps to help develop or partner with the SE sector.

Acknowledgement

The Innovation implementation support programme has been developed by Assoc. Prof. Cecilia ÖMAN.

She is grateful for the support provided by friends, colleagues and partners all over the world.

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