Awesome Social Enterprise Awesome

📗Resources to dive into the world of social enterprises 🌼

A social enterprise is an organization that is primarily focused on social impact and is at least partially self-funded.

When I was at Eckerd College I repeatedly bumped into the concept of social enterprises. First, in a course called Technology, Society, and The Environment, then through meeting the CTO of a social enterprise, and finally by taking a course called Social Entrepreneurship. Each step along the way I fell more in love with the concept of social enterprises. However, I never felt like there was an easy way to connect to the world of social enterprises.

Eventually, I set a Google Alert for weekly digests of anything related to "social entrepreneurs." That worked okay but I still felt like I was missing out on something. Fast-forward a few years and I find myself heavily involved in a nonprofit called hackNY, working at The New York Times, and having a stronger urge than ever to learn about social enterprises. As such, I've started compiling this list of resources to make it easy for people to connect with the world of social enterprises. See the FAQs at the bottom for some common questions.


What to Read

Wikipedia Links 🔗

Wikipedia is a great place to explore and find related topics.

News 📰

Finding Articles


Papers 📃

Books 📚

Title Author Year Notes
Social Entrepreneurship: What Everyone Needs To Know David Bornstein 2010 Great introduction to social entrepreneurship. Short and sweet with lots of great answers to common questions.
Ladderworks books various 2022 Diverse picture books for empowering over a million kids to become social entrepreneurs.
Becoming a Social Entrepreneur: Starting Out, Scaling Up and Staying True Michael Gordon 2019
Paying It Forward: How to Be A Social Entrepreneur Josh Littlejohn MBE 2023

Podcasts 🎧

Courses 🎓

Future Learn

Philanthropy University | Interview with CEO | Origins



Acumen Academy


Institutions 🏫

Academic institutions researching social enterprise:

Tools 🔨

What to Watch

Videos 📽

Movies 🎥

Title Year Notes
The Social Shift 2018 Four young adults travel across Canada interviewing social entrepreneurs.
The New Breed 2020 Follows three change-makers as they build social enterprises.

Communities 🤝



Finding Local Communities




People 🧑


Social Entrepreneurs

Twitter Accounts 🐦

See a feed of all these accounts by following my "Social Enterprise News" Twitter list here.

Social Enterprise Examples


FAQs ❓

Q: What is the goal of this repo?
A: To provide resources for people to dive into the world of social enterprises. To get people excited about social enterprises. To spread the word of social enterprises.

Q: What do you like about social enterprises?
A: I love the idea of bringing the goodness of nonprofits and the efficiency of business together. Not all nonprofits are inefficient and not all businesses are bad. However, the potential of unleashing the notoriously efficient business practices to maximize social impact is what I want to encourage people to explore.

Q: Why social enterprise instead of social entrepreneurship?
A: I want to focus on the organizational structure rather than the individuals within an organization. Social entrepreneurship can mean anything from a large organization championing for social causes to a lone person doing community development. While both of those are important and valuable this is a resource geared towards people interested in the organizational side of things.

Q: How is a social enterprise different from a nonprofit?
A: A social enterprise may be a nonprofit. While nonprofits are usually focused on social impact they may not be generating any revenue to fund themselves.

Q: Why not just add this information to Wikipedia?
A: Wikipedia is meant to contain information that's encyclopedic in nature. Meaning, it should contain the most important and verified information in a well summarized form. This document is much more like a phone book trying to link out to relative resources that are useful.