The ‘social’ in ‘social enterprise’

A Walk With.. Lisa Jordan

Social enterprises – businesses with a revenue model that try and make the world a better place – are on the rise. We discuss this trend with ISS alumna Lisa Jordan, who has over 30 years’ experience working for governments, NGOs and foundations in (nearly) all parts of the world. She knows for a fact that small initiatives can generate a huge impact.

A Walk With.. Lisa Jordan

If you ask Lisa, there's multiple kinds of people: those who want to build things and those who want to change things. Lisa herself chose to dedicate her career to social change. She got the opportunity to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on social change initiatives around the world. Currently, one of the initiatives she is supporting is using technology and knowledge from Delft and Rotterdam to create sustainable energy from waste plants in Africa.

These social enterprises that Lisa supports differ from NGOs, as the enterprises do have a revenue-generating model. 'Doing well and doing good' is a well-known saying in the industry. However, despite of the model, the social impact is always dominant in these organisations. Lisa tells us that, if an organisation wants to be eligible for (financial) support, their cause should always come first.

Doesn't this work make a professional cynical in the long run? We asked Lisa and also discussed climate change, social inequity and the differences between ' The Big Apple' and 'Manhattan on the Maas.' Watch the video for the full interview!

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