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Offer: Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship announces Social Entrepreneur of the Year Competition

The Search and Selection process was established to recognize outstanding social entrepreneurs around the globe, an initiative of the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship.

The Global Selection is open to all organizations based in

ASIA (except India)
EUROPE (except France, Germany and Switzerland)

Having read the criteria for selection, if you believe you qualify as a candidate, please apply by 31 March 2012.

If you think you know someone who should be a candidate, forward this link to him or her.

We look forward to hearing from you.

contact: info(at)


Regional Meetings of the World Economic Forum
Winners are invited to participation at the regional meeting of the World Economic Forum, which also provides them with the opportunity to connect to business leaders, key politicians, civil society members and media representatives of the region. Social entrepreneurs working in these regions make important contributions to the outcome-centred discussions and to the key initiatives of World Economic Forum on topics such as health, education and the digital divide. The Foundation covers the costs of the registration fee, transportation, food and lodging for social entrepreneurs at his/her first regional event.

Inclusion in the Schwab Foundation network of leading social entrepreneurs.
The winners will be included in the Schwab Foundation network of social entrepreneurs. This includes access to a peer network of social entrepreneurs, special benefits such as pro-bono consulting services and scholarships to executive education courses at world-class institutions such as Harvard Business School, Stanford University and INSEAD.

Possible nomination to the Forum of Young Global Leaders
Excellent finalists or winners under 40 years of age will also be nominated to the Young Global Leaders (YGL) network of the World Economic Forum. The YGL group is a community of proven global leaders under 40 years of age who have achieved national and global recognition for their accomplishments in the field of government, business, media or academia. The YGL community holds their own major YGL events twice a year. The synergies catalyzed by bringing the YGL and social entrepreneur communities together has proven to have significant impact for both groups.

Possible nomination to the Global Agenda Councils
World-class social entrepreneurs will be invited to join the global social entrepreneur community, which includes the prospect of being invited to join and contribute towards the Global Agenda Councils of the World Economic Forum.

Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum
The winners are eligible to be selected as part of the Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur delegation to the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, taking place at the end of January. The registration fee, and in some cases, transportation, food and lodging, will be covered by the Foundation.

The Foundation works in close collaboration with the Forum to ensure Davos participants benefit from social entrepreneurs' know-how and insights derived from galvanizing communities to successfully carry out pioneering initiatives that have improved economic opportunity and quality of life. The Forum connects the community of social entrepreneurs with corporate and government leaders that legitimize and facilitate their work.


Please note that government personnel or public sector organizations will not be considered, nor will intermediary organisations, research institutions or foundations that seek to create social value through the provision of knowledge, or financial and/or technical support to community-based groups.

The top 3 most important criteria to be considered a finalist are:

1. Innovation: The candidate has brought about social change by transforming traditional practice. Such transformation can have been achieved through

• an innovative product or service,
• the development of a different approach, or
• a more determined or rigorous application of known technologies, ideas and approaches.

A salient characteristic of a social entrepreneur is coming up with a pattern-changing idea and implementing it successfully.

2. Sustainability: The candidate has generated the social conditions and/or institutions needed to sustain the initiative and is dedicating all of his/her time to it.

• If set up as a non-profit entity, the organisation is achieving some degree of financial self-sustainability through fees or revenues or is engaged in creating mutually beneficial partnerships with business and/or the public sector. Where possible, economic incentives are embraced. In any case, there is a clear difference from traditional charity and a move towards community-based empowerment and sustainability. There is also a difference with traditional business.

• If set up as a for-profit entity, the orientation toward social and environmental value creation predominates, with financial return treated as a secondary means to an end, rather than an end in itself.

3. Direct social impact: The candidate has founded, developed and implemented the entrepreneurial initiative directly, together with poor or marginalised beneficiaries and stakeholders. Impact manifests itself in quantifiable results and testimonials and is well documented. There are no significant negative externalities.

The Schwab Foundation will also consider the 2 criteria below in determining the winner:

4. Reach and Scope: The social entrepreneur’s initiative has spread beyond its initial context and has been adapted successfully to other settings in the country or internationally, either by the entrepreneur him/herself, or through others who have replicated or adapted elements of it.

5. Replicability: The initiative can be adapted to other regions of the world to solve similar problems. The entrepreneur is open to sharing with others the tools, approaches and techniques that are critical to the adaptation of the initiative.

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