09 Jan 2019 – 22 Mar 2019  Social entrepreneurs are gaining international attention motivated by the desire for change and to see the world as it can be, not as it is. Students in the course will learn how social entrepreneurs have developed creative solutions to address social problems.


The intention of the course is to develop knowledge, appreciate of the role of social entrepreneurs that create social change, deepen students understanding of the world around them, and to inspire you to use your skills and knowledge to be as Gandhi said, 'the change you wish to see in the world."Students in this course will gain knowledge about social entrepreneurs and how they are creating solutions to address societal problems, learn how to develop creative solutions to address social problems, and empower you to see social entrepreneurship as a force for social change. The course is designed for you if you want to gain valuable tools to prepare you to make an impact on the lives of others.

Programme details

Unit 1: Introduction to social entrepreneurship: The journey ahead

Profile of social entrepreneurs

Create your own profile of a social entrepreneur

Grounding in social entrepreneurship

Typology of ventures

Definitional disputes

 Initial questions on social entrepreneurship


Unit 2: Creating social change: The social value proposition and identifying a social business opportunity

Seizing social business opportunities

Legal structure

Social entrepreneurship profiles

Community asset mapping

Profile of a social entrepreneur: Albina Ruiz, Ciudad Saludable

Social value proposition

Triple bottom line


Unit 3: Understanding poverty: The Millennium Development Goals

The critical need to alleviate poverty

Ecosystem approach

The role of cooperatives in addressing poverty

Profile of a social organization: Grameen Bank


Unit 4: Human-Centered Design: Partnering with the targeted community to address social problems

Profile of a social organisation: IDEO

The role of mind mapping in creating solutions

Empowerment model: Partnering with targeted community


Unit 5: Developing a theory of change: Starting with the social impact

Theory of change explained

Understanding the theory of change more deeply

Brief introduction to systems thinking

Profile of a social organization: Global Social Benefit Incubator


Unit 6: Envisioning an innovative society: The role of social innovation

Social Innovations: A critical element to scaling social impact

Disruptive innovations

Profile of a social entrepreneur: Dr. Venkataswamy, Aravind Eye Institute, India


Unit 7: The business model: Creating a social business model

The role of the business model in starting a social venture

Equitable distribution of value

The role of the business model: The business model canvas

Social business model framework

Profile of a social entrepreneur: Husk Power Systems

Business model canvas exercise

Business model execution failure


Unit 8: Funding social ventures: Strategies for success

Sustainable funding sources: Earned income

Profile of a social entrepreneur: Furniture Resource Centre

Traditional funding sources

Social investment funding sources

Investing in a social venture

Relationship building with donors and investors


Unit 9: The driving force behind social entrepreneurship: Measurement and scaling social impact

Building the foundation

Profile of a social entrepreneur: KickStart

Scalability through expansion

Measurement tools


Unit 10: The future: Reflection and shared experiences

Path to social entrepreneurship

Thoughts for changemakers

‘Be the Change’ reflection paper


We strongly recommend that you try to find a little time each week to engage in the online conversations (at times that are convenient to you) as the forums are an integral, and very rewarding, part of the course and the online learning experience.


Recommended reading

To participate in the course you will need to have regular access to the Internet and you will need to buy the following textbook:

Bornstein, D. and Davis, S., Social Entrepreneurship: What Everyone Needs to Know (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2010)



To earn credit (CATS points) for your course you will need to register and pay an additional £10 fee for each course you enrol on. You can do this by ticking the relevant box at the bottom of the enrolment form or when enrolling online. If you do not register when you enrol, you have up until the course start date to register and pay the £10 fee.


For more information on CATS point please click on the link below: http://www.conted.ox.ac.uk/studentsupport/faq/cats.php


Coursework is an integral part of all online courses and everyone enrolled will be expected to do coursework, but only those who have registered for credit will be awarded CATS points for completing work at the required standard. If you are enrolled on the Certificate of Higher Education you need to indicate this on the enrolment form but there is no additional registration fee.


Assignments are not graded but are marked either pass or fail.


All students who successfully complete this course, whether registered for credit or not, are eligible for a Certificate of Completion. Completion consists of submitting both course assignments and actively participating in the course forums. Certificates will be available, online, for those who qualify after the course finishes.


IT requirements

This course is delivered online; to participate you must to be familiar with using a computer for purposes such as sending email and searching the Internet. You will also need regular access to the Internet and a computer meeting our recommended minimum computer specification.



Home/EU Fee: £270.00

Non-EU Fee: £295.00

Take this course for CATS points: £10.00



Tanja Collavo

Tanja Collavo is a postdoctoral researcher at Saïd Business School, Oxford University. She has just completed, at the same institution, her PhD in Management Research, with a project analysing networks in the social entrepreneurship sector in England. She has authored several blogs for the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship and she just published an article on the definitional debate in the social entrepreneurship sector on the Journal of Entrepreneurship, Management and Innovation.


Course aims

This social entrepreneurship course is designed to introduce the concept as well as engage students and the tutor in a joint learning experience of this emerging field. Through the course students will:

Be exposed to the concept of social entrepreneurship and social enterprises and how social entrepreneurs are transforming society to deliver social impact in their home communities and abroad.

Understand the role of measuring impact and how to quantify the social impact for investors, donors, and beneficiaries to help ensure that scarce resources are utilized appropriately.

Be aware of how they might apply social entrepreneurship skills in their future pursuits to address social problems.


Teaching methods

The teaching methods for this course include:

Individual or group activity on a topic area of interest to the students on social change.

Weekly discussion and reflection questions on readings.

Short activities to support readings.

Online polls with student feedback.

Mini cases and videos about a social entrepreneur.

Weekly exercises to enhance learning from writing your own social value proposition to completing a theory of change.

Weekly shared student journal/discussion (blog or other user friendly online tool) to share with peers.


Learning outcomes

By the end of this course students will be expected to:

Understand the complexity of social change and the concept of social entrepreneurship.

Appreciate the role of measurement to quantify social impact and how social entrepreneurs mobilize scarce resources to affect social change.


By the end of this course students will be expected to have gained the following:

Knowledge and understanding of the meaning of social entrepreneurship, how its principles have been applied to address social problems, and what challenges are faced by those wishing to adopt social entrepreneurship methods.

Gain knowledge and understanding about social entrepreneurship, challenges faced by social entrepreneurs and learn the role of developing a sustainable business model that addresses a social problem.

Learn how social entrepreneurs have applied social entrepreneurship principles to address social problems, gain the ability to empower disadvantaged community members to create social change and develop your own skills to 'be the change you wish to see in the world'. Gandhi.


Assessment methods

Assessment for this course is based on two written assignments – one short assignment of 500 words due half way through the course and one longer assignment of 1500 words due at the end of the course.

Assignments are not graded but are marked either pass or fail.





Get in touch

8 + 14 =

Copyright © 2020 Enterprising Oxford | Site by Herd