Social entrepreneurship consists of using the entrepreneurial behavior for achievement of social objectives and community’s well-being. This concept involves various economic initiatives the main purpose of which is not the profit. Instead, they aim at achieving the public interest or the interest of a certain socially marginalized group.
There is no such thing as widely accepted comprehension of the term ”social enterprise”, but one of the leading definitions is given by EMES (European Research Network), and it says, ”social enterprises are private organizations that do not operate for the purpose of making profit (‘not- for-profit’), but they offer goods or services directly linked to their explicit goal of operating in favor of community’s well-being. Enterprises of this kind rely on collective dynamic which is created by several types of stakeholders who are a part of their managing authority and for whom the autonomy of these enterprises is highly valued and who take the economic risks which are connected with their activity. “
The key phrase here would be ”not-for-profit”. However, this is not the same as ”non-profit” organization. The objective of social enterprises is to make profit; this way they secure their financial sustainability. Nonetheless, they do not exist primarily for the purposes of financial gain but for the purposes of a social mission of some sort.
Social entrepreneurs are leaders in the field of social change, and they can be found in private, public as well as in non-profit sector. It can be said that a social entrepreneur is an individual who uses profitable strategies in order to achieve social objectives, simultaneously seeking both financial as well as social return on investment.