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Social business? Community lead business? Inclusive business?

I'm confused! :)

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Written by DeletedUser

Hey guys!

I'm a little confused about how are we defining social business! I'm sorry if I'm being a too convergent in this early stage of the process. Could anyone please help me with a little feedback about this? Maybe other people also have the same doubt. 

I understood from the challenge that the impact we're trying to generate comes from designing a (social) business model that impacts and spins around the issue of health (nutrition, infant mortality, sexual health). This means, a business model which encompasses an economic activity or transaction that tackles this issues directly and generates a profit. 

For example, the inspirations of the Ice Cream car ( Krassimira Iordanova) and the Panela product ( Meena Kadri) are great examples of this objective (the business models themselves aim at improving health/nutrition). 

There is another way of generating impact, a little different, which is designing business models that don't have much to do with the issues, yet they generate considerable profits to invest in the communities' health and are lead by them. The Aguadeño Hat ( Krassimira Iordanova) and the Ragball project ( Johan Löfström) may be good examples of this kind of empowerment. 

Yet there is another way to generate impact, which consists of inviting big companies to integrate communities as active agents in their productive or distribution chains. This is called "inclusive business" and it comes from the idea of the market at the bottom of the pyramid (for great ideas about this please visit http://www.inclusivebusiness.org/). The inspirations provided by  Simon Morfit and  Daniel Nacamuli with the Unilever and IBM insights are good examples.

This is what I've noticed so far from all the inspirations, and I was just wondering which ones generate a bigger impact and are more aligned not only with the brief of the challenge but with the needs of all the actors behind the project (including the local government). Maybe it's a hybrid model between the three!!! We don't know yet.

Anyway, I think this question may be useful for our research and ideation efforts. Everyone, please feel free to comment and co-create :)

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Photo of Meena Kadri

Great provocation & fab discussion guys! We're fans of 'deferring judgement' in the Inspiration phase while folks cast their nets as widely as Srivi + Arjan mention. You never know where a good idea is going to come from! And indeed – as suggested by both Milo & Jeroen – they often hybrids informed by multiple inspirations. Looking forward to your onwards hunting & gathering, exploring & expanding. In the upcoming Concepting Phase many of you may start to connect dots and focus your thoughts based on this wide-ranging journey of inspiration. We're loving that conversations like this one are happening along the way!

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Photo of Krassimira Iordanova

I think the way Milo grouped the inspirations, might be an idea for creating the themes when we move to Concepting...

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DeletedUser

For the past 9 months in a foreign land, I have heard many people pronounce my name in weird ways. But, none called me Srivi :-)

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DeletedUser

Thank you all for your kind feedback. @Srinivasan: LOL :)

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Photo of Meena Kadri

Sloppy typing at 1 in the morning! Srini, this voucher entitles you to wildly misspell my name on an occasion of your choice ;^)

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DeletedUser

ROFL funniest voucher I've ever received :-)

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Photo of Vincent Cheng

Milo, love how you've explored the definition of Social Business, and in the process identified certain areas/themes ripe for ideation. Thought you might be interested in my attempt to think about the Social Business definition & Financing from a different slant (have linked to your inspiration here as well): http://bit.ly/mj3yoy

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DeletedUser

Thanks for your post Vincent! It cleared up fuzzy points about the concept of social business!

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