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Social Entrepreneurship: What Everyone Needs to Know [Paperback]

David Bornstein , Susan Davis
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 10.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

16 April 2010 What Everyone Needs To Know
In development circles, there is now widespread consensus that social entrepreneurs represent a far better mechanism to respond to needs than we have ever had before--a decentralized and emergent force that remains our best hope for solutions that can keep pace with our problems and create a more peaceful world.

David Bornstein's previous book on social entrepreneurship, How to Change the World, was hailed by Nicholas Kristof in The New York Times as "a bible in the field" and published in more than twenty countries. Now, Bornstein shifts the focus from the profiles of successful social innovators in that book--and teams with Susan Davis, a founding board member of the Grameen Foundation--to offer the first general overview of social entrepreneurship. In a Q & A format allowing readers to go directly to the information they need, the authors map out social entrepreneurship in its broadest terms as well as in its particulars.

Bornstein and Davis explain what social entrepreneurs are, how their organizations function, and what challenges they face. The book will give readers an understanding of what differentiates social entrepreneurship from standard business ventures and how it differs from traditional grant-based non-profit work. Unlike the typical top-down, model-based approach to solving problems employed by the World Bank and other large institutions, social entrepreneurs work through a process of iterative learning -- learning by doing--working with communities to find unique, local solutions to unique, local problems. Most importantly, the book shows readers exactly how they can get involved.

Anyone inspired by Barack Obama's call to service and who wants to learn more about the essential features and enormous promise of this new method of social change, Social Entrepreneurship is the ideal first place to look.

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Frequently Bought Together

Social Entrepreneurship: What Everyone Needs to Know + How to be a Social Entrepreneur: Make Money and  Change the World + The Social Entrepreneur: Making Communities Work
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Product details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: OUP USA (16 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195396332
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195396331
  • Product Dimensions: 20.4 x 15.8 x 1.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 166,742 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description


"Excellent!" --Nicholas Kristof, New York Times"Order this book and read it immediately...This book gives you some great ways to understand and apply the whole idea of entrepreneurship/social entrepreneurship." --Tom Suddes, The Suddes Group, "The most essential starter guide to the field I've yet seen.""A great primer of social entrepreneurship, trends, and a look into the future." --Encouragizers"This book is an excellent way to get a snapshot of everything going on in the Social Entrepreneurship space.""Practical offer[s] concrete examples of the challenges faced by social ventures and shedding light on the issues that make social enterprises different from traditional businesses.""The first to give an excellent overview of what being a social entrepreneur is all about. You'll learn what the difference is between a social entrepreneurship and a regular business venture and traditional non-profits. If you think you want to innovate unique social solutions to unique social problems for your encore career, this is the place to start." --Lin Schreiber, founder of

About the Author

David Bornstein specializes in writing about social innovation. He is the author of The Price of a Dream and How to Change the World, which has been published in 20 languages. His articles have appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, the New York Times, and many other publications globally. He co-wrote the PBS documentary "To Our Credit." He is the founder of, a Web site devoted to uncovering stories of change. He lives in New York City.

Susan Davis is a thought leader in international development and civil society innovation. She is a founder and current President & CEO of BRAC USA, a newly created organization to support BRAC's global expansion to Africa and other countries in Asia. In addition she was a founding board member and Chair of the Grameen Foundation and current board member. She also serves on the international board committee that selects Ashoka Fellows and is a mentor and coach for the NYU Reynolds Program in Social Entrepreneurship.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Informative and well written 25 Jun 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book had everything i needed. many others I saw weren't very modern and weren't suited to just reading the chapters you need as you go along.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving guidebook to social entrepreneurship 27 May 2011
By Rolf Dobelli TOP 500 REVIEWER
George Soros once said, "Let business be business and philanthropy be philanthropy. Keep the two separate." And never the twain shall meet. However, even Soros, capitalist businessman and philanthropist extraordinaire, eventually succumbed to seeing the merits of and need for social enterprise. David Bornstein and Susan Davis, two scholars of social innovation, offer a truly inspiring book about the noble, burgeoning field of "social entrepreneurship." They offer recognition to the countless anonymous individuals who address the world's most intractable problems, and they dole out useful advice to the "changemakers" who give voices to people who have none. Although this guide may be a tad basic for workers at established social enterprises, getAbstract recommends it as a wonderful source of tips and inspiration to budding social entrepreneurs in all fields who strive to change the world for the better.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  24 reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE essential book of social entrepreneurship 28 July 2010
By Marcelo - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It usually takes me two months to read a nonfiction book. However in this case I read Bornstein and Davis in less than 5 days because I was completely engaged with their explanations and definitions of everything related to social entrepreneurship.
I was fully inspired by Bornstein's "How to change the world" and the cases he presented. In his new book with Davis I understood more about social entrepreneurship, its challenges, strengths, etc.
I have been working on an organization that promotes social entrepreneurship for more than 3 years; after reading this book I understand more about my organization and my role.
I believe that this book is crucial for everyone interested in social innovation, public service or social entrepreneurship.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book so far on social entrepreneurship 2 Oct 2010
By J. Edwards - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The most comprehensive overview of social entrepreneurship yet also the shortest and most concise. Each section gives you the needed background about a topic, then summarizes what is happening now with short but insightful comments on every topic. This is, in one short book, the best primer for those who want an overview of the field but also the most penetrating analysis for practitioners. Bornstein's deep knowledge of social entrepreneurship, from the entrepreneurs to the concepts and emerging trends all shine through on every page.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship 12 Feb 2011
By Debbi Brock - Published on
The book provides an excellent introduction to social entrepreneurship and how individuals can play a role in creating social change. The authors walk us through what social entrepreneurship is, the pioneers and how it is different from government, activism, and traditional entrepreneurship. The next section covers the challenges of addressing some of societies most intractable problems through entrepreneurial endeavors. The book concludes with a discussion how to envision an innovating society where people are taking charge of making long term systemic change to society. A must read for anyone new to the field of social entrepreneurship or wants to help create social change.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very thought-provoking book 5 Jun 2010
By T. Pryor - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What do you get when you combine business skills with social conscience? A social entrepreneur. Social entrepreneurs recognize when a part of society is stuck and offers new ways to get society unstuck. They don't just give a fish or even teach people how to fish. They revolutionize fishing. Examples in the book of social entrepreneurs are the micro-loan Grameen Bank, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee. This book is great for people who see a big problem in society, e.g., high school drop out rates of 50%+ among Hispanic males, divorce rates 50%+ and unemployment rates of 10%, and tackle the issues using little money but lots of energy and innovation.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading in schools and by world leaders 28 Aug 2010
By Marci Alboher - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
We spend most of our days taking in messages about all the problems and wrongs plaguing the world, but Bornstein provides a fresh approach -- highlighting the visionaries who are doing something to fix all those things that need fixing. Whether you're new to world of social entrepreneurship or working in the field, this book will leave you inspired to join the leaders who are showing that it is possible to do work that has lasting impact. This book should be required reading for students of all ages, and for decision-makers around the world.
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