Our work centers on the concepts of social entrepreneurship and social enterprise/start-ups. Our goal is to make these concepts mainstream and common knowledge in our society.
Here are a few questions/answers if you are new to this field:
Question 1: What is social entrepreneurship?
Social entrepreneurship is the use of creative, innovative approaches to develop projects and organizations that create broad social impact. Basically, it’s entrepreneurialism, but with the central goal of having a social rather than simply business impact.
Question 2: Who are social entrepreneurs?
These are the change agents who identify a social need and use entrepreneurial approaches to create these projects and organizations. They are often passionate, creative, risk-taking, and leaders in society.
Question 3: What is a social enterprise?
Social enterprises are revenue-generating, economically viable models that can deliver against financial as well as quantifiable social and/or environmental performance targets. With a double or triple bottom line, they have the central aim to create a true social impact, but often employ traditional business models to do so.
Basically, they are businesses with a core mission of solving a social problem.
At NM, we encourage our projects to develop hybrid models similar to a social enterprise. However, when they are under the incubator, we call them “social start-ups”. Because they are still in the early stages, they are focused more on building rather than establishing their enterprise.
Question 4: Do all of NM’s incubated projects become social enterprises?
No, not all. We do encourage the hybrid models of social enterprise—as we believe this helps achieve financial sustainability—but it is not always feasible or desirable for every project. What is most important is that they are doing something new and innovative, and having a true social impact.