Teaching social enterprise? Young entrepreneurs debate

Monday 01 June 2015 -
15:15 to 16:30
Session 3.7. Queen Elizabeth II Centre, London.

Social enterprise is attracting increasing attention globally and is on the agenda for many universities. In some cases institutions are re-appraising their societal missions and, in others, they are focusing on the university as a hot-bed for innovative solutions. At the same time, there is a growing interest from students in social enterprise.

But how well equipped are universities to respond to this agenda?  Our debate, led by a panel of four young social entrepreneurs, explores the nature of social entrepreneurship. We ask - can it be taught? Where do academic, departmental, organisational and geographical boundaries work against young social entrepreneurs? And where do the cross-boundary and credible connections of universities provide fertile ground for them? 

This interactive session provides a unique opportunity for delegates to see through the eyes of young social entrepreneurs. We explore how their experiences may shape the development of university education.

Regina Agyare
Chief Executive Officer, Soronko Solutions, Ghana

Regina Agyare graduated from Ashesi University, Ghana with a Computer Science degree. She founded Soronko Solutions, a social enterprise that uses technology to drive human potential with a laptop and table. The social enterprise now impacts 2,065 girls across 5 regions in Ghana by teaching them coding skills. She is now taking her programme to Burkina Faso and Nigeria. Session 3.7

Regina Agyare

Joshua Bicknell
Co-founder, Balloon Ventures, UK

Joshua is Co-founder of Balloon Ventures, a social enterprise that connects young people from around the world with micro-entrepreneurs in developing countries to create the SMEs of tomorrow. Frustrated at the lack of meaningful opportunities for graduates to drive social change, he co-founded the organisation shortly after leaving university. He is a visiting fellow at Cass Business School and has a BA from the University of Bristol and MA from the University of British Columbia. Session 3.7

Joshua Bicknell

Ayu Chuepa
Founder, Akha Ama Coffee, Thailand

Ayu Chuepa graduated from Chiangrai Rajabhat University through the Faculty of Humanities for English Studies Programme. Having grown up in a remote, agricultural village in the north of Thailand, Ayu and his mother decided to establish Akha Ama Coffee as a social enterprise to support coffee farmers by applying good, clean and fair practices. Session 3.7

Ayu Chuepa

Christopher Tock
Co-founder and Executive Director, Empowering Youth Endeavours, Malaysia

Christopher Tock graduated from Imperial College London having read joint Mathematics & Computer Science. After 2 years in an investment bank, he and co-founder Mohd Reza saw an opportunity to solve a mismatch in skills and demand between youths and employers. They set up Empowering Youth Endeavors (EYE) Project, a social enterprise which aims to reduce youth unemployment in underserved communities. Session 3.7

Christopher Tock

Paula Woodman
Social enterprise advisor - Education and Society, British Council, UK

Paula Woodman is currently the global advisor for the British Council's £2.5million social enterprise programme. Previously Paula has successfully piloted and co-founded a social enterprise which operates across the UK. She has been a key player in the UK social enterprise movement since 1999, advising policy-makers and social entrepreneurs alike. Session 3.7

Paula Woodman