Magazine article Management Today

Brain Food: MT - Masterclass - Social Capitalism

Magazine article Management Today

Brain Food: MT - Masterclass - Social Capitalism

Article excerpt

What is it? Capitalists are in it for the money; social capitalists are trying to achieve positive change and make money at the same time.

They are 'social entrepreneurs' who have identified needs in their communities and worked out commercially viable ways of meeting them. A social entrepreneur might, for example, want to create jobs in an area of high unemployment by setting up a new business that serves a specific market. Social capitalists move in where conventional business people fear to tread. But this is not charity. These enterprises have to survive in the real world of supply and demand.

Where did it come from?

In the 1990s, there was a growing desire on both sides of the Atlantic to build businesses that were about more than just making money. This inspired the concept of corporate social responsibility. Social capitalism takes CSR and turns it on its well-meaning head. Instead of bolting on an ethical bit to a straight commercial enterprise, social capitalists sought out disadvantaged areas and important causes and launched businesses to help them. …

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