Playing to be a social entrepreneur and maybe one day, become one?

Social entrepreneur, changemaker, SE. These are terms that we have been hearing regularly in recent years without always knowing what they mean. Most of the time we have a rather vague but very positive idea, something like “a positive initiative that interweaves economic activities with beneficial impacts on societies” but without much more detail.

Having said that, we can wonder who are these social entrepreneurs? What are their teachings and how do we appropriate them?

To begin with, let’s agree that social entrepreneurship responds to social, societal or environmental problems (exclusion, inequality, precariousness) that society seems not to know, not to be able to, or not to be willing to solve alone. To address this problem, the social entrepreneur initiates an economic activity that can be quite innovative and use new technologies or not innovative at all, just different from the traditional scheme and this to provide a sustainable, local and financially viable solution.

The objective of this economic activity is not to generate maximum profit but rather to create value and to place the human being and the various stakeholders at the heart of the development process as actors and collaborators. Social enterprise can take several formats: associations, cooperatives, mutual, start-ups, SMEs. It is the objective and the purpose of the initiative that makes it possible for the company to be considered as social or not.

Given the positive perspectives and opportunities presented by social entrepreneurship, it is not surprising to see communities and even governments pushing for this practice and entrepreneurial desire to be stimulated and promoted. And what better way to boost this desire than to train ambitious, daring young people who want to change the world?

Learning while having fun:

Among the initiatives implemented to encourage and train future social entrepreneurs we find games, but serious games and we can mention a couple of them in a non-exhaustive way:

  • Fricsol, a board game that is like an anti-Monopoly. The objective here is not to buy as many streets as possible and to ransom those who pass through your properties, but rather to make you take on the role of a well-defined individual and make you collaborate and cooperate with others to achieve a project with a social purpose, with all the difficulties and obstacles that this represents.
  • Play4impact, a board game developed during an Erasmus+ project that trains players to make decisions and find innovative ideas to redefine the entrepreneurial landscape.
  • Social Education: an online role-playing game (developed for an Erasmus + project) to learn about the qualities of a good social entrepreneur. This game raises awareness of the creation of a collective social economy enterprise that integrates disadvantaged people who are far from the professional market.
  • The Erasmus+ project “Escape Room for Social Entrepreneurs“, which aims to provide players with a real escape room with its plots and puzzles related to social entrepreneurship themes.

Thanks to these games and experiences, players can develop or acquire useful skills and knowledge in the related field. Games engage and encourage collaboration, social intelligence, boldness since it is only a game and so many other essential qualities to dare to become a social entrepreneur!

In Europe, there is also a very large network of social entrepreneurs who wish to encourage, support or help those who feel ready to act constructively for society. Indeed, it is by exchanging, learning, and sharing that we find ideas or realize that we can also, at our own level, have a positive impact on society!

The Erasmus + Project of Logospycom and partners :

The goal of the project “Escape Room for Social Entrepreneur” is to redefine the entrepreneurial ramifications of gamification in youth-oriented activities.
It primarily aims at the education of the next generation of entrepreneurs who are concerned with the sociological ramifications of entrepreneurship.

Objectives of the project:

  • develop a culture of social entrepreneurship and innovation among young people
  • provide an innovative ICT–based model, with theoretical and practical methods
  • motivate the young professionals in NGOs to commit in active learning
  • strengthen cooperation and exchange of information and good practices between different areas of Europe