Viewpoint: The myth of sustainability is damaging the social enterprise sector

Friday, September 28, 2018

By Alastair Wilson

You can understand why so many people are excited about social enterprise. The model sounds ideal: businesses that exist to help people in need or improve the environment.

Hurrah! If only we’d known all along that social enterprises could save the day, by earning all their own money while tackling society’s biggest challenges.

But here’s the thing. The expectations on social enterprises right now are unrealistic. The very hype bringing social enterprise into the spotlight also poses a threat to our sector. Why?

Because not all social enterprises can become fully sustainable – in other words, earning all their income from trading, rather than grant or donations. Some can, and that’s fantastic – but certainly not all.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation News (link opens in a new window)

social enterprise, sustainable business