Enabling the flourishing and evolution of social entrepreneurship for innovative and inclusive societies  Dates: 2014-2016 Funder: European Commission

“Enabling the Flourishing and Evolution of Social Entrepreneurship for Innovative and Inclusive Societies” was a research project supported by the Seventh Framework Programme for Research, funded by the European Commission.

The project was one of the last projects funded by FP7 and covered ten countries: Albania, Austria, UK (England and Scotland), France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Serbia and Sweden.  

Responding to the challenges identified in Europe 2020 Strategy for Smart, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth and HORIZON 2020 - in particular to societal challenges to create inclusive, innovative and secure societies - the EFESEIIS projects aimed to fully understand the conditions under which social entrepreneurship starts, develops and contributes effectively and efficiently to solve societal challenges in a sustainable way.  

The four main objectives of this project were: 

  • To develop an evolutionary theory of social entrepreneurship explaining the different ways in which social entrepreneurship has developed across Europe.  
  • To identify the features of an “enabling eco-system for social entrepreneurship”; the conditions under which social enterprise can effectively contribute to building an inclusive society. 
  • To identify the “new generation” of social entrepreneurs particularly those that have set up organisations in the last three years, characterised by austerity, recession but also an unprecedented interest in social enterprise.  
  • To provide advice to stakeholders (i.e. policy makers, organisations support social entrepreneurship and social enterprises) by understanding different perspectives on social entrepreneurship and how they facilitate its development and proposing a model for optimisation of the impact of European/national policy initiatives on local social enterprise growth and sustainability. 

EFESEIIS involved around 1100 stakeholders – from social entrepreneurs, policy makers, financial organizations, and local authorities to individuals – in its research activities. 


Project Team: Simone Baglioni, Stephen Sinclair, Michael Roy, Micaela Mazzei  

Sustainable Development Goals