Now in their 5th year, the SEE Changemakers Recognition Awards are the only comprehensive awards highlighting the achievements of social entrepreneurs originating at universities and the teams and institutions who support them. Read on to learn more about those pioneering social innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders across the Higher Education Sector and those excelling in their innovative support and partnership development to embed support to catalyse social change.
This year over 37 applications were received across the 8 award categories and engaged a broad range of universities across England and overseas. Our panel of judges were selected for their strategic knowledge and practical insight in supporting and developing social innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders, across staff, student, graduate and wider communities. The awards which are supported by UnLtd and HEFCE were judged by a team comprising of:
- Mark Norbury, CEO - UnLtd
- Ed Hughes, Head of Health and Medicine - HEFCE
- Rachel Samuels, Policy Advisor for Knowledge Exchange - HEFCE
- Andrew Bacon, CEO, Enactus
- Peter Holbrook, Chief Executive - SE UK
- Nickala Torkington, Director - Flourish CIC and UnLtd Associate (Chair)
On a scorching afternoon in June, they had the tough job of selecting those to award from the high quality of the applications and range of innovations and impact. The winners and highly commended awards were announced as part of this year's SEE Changemakers Conference convened by Oxford Social Enterprise Partnership held on 28th June at Wolfsen College, the University of Oxford. Read on to learn more about this year's winners announced by Tim West-Pioneers Post, Ed Hughes - HEFCE and Andrew Bacon -Enactus .........
SOCIAL ENTREPRENEUR AWARDS 2017
Outstanding Achievement Award
This award is to recognise outstanding staff, student or graduate social entrepreneurs who have personally grown, developed and achieved through their journey as a social entrepreneur
WINNER: HALEH MORAVEJ, MET MUnch - STAFF, MANCHESTER METROPOLITAN UNIVERSITY
A staff member with huge amounts of creativity and energy to inspire the next generation of learners through designing experiential learning, supporting student led co-design of curriculum as well as projects and someone who brings fun and social purpose to all of her work. She has successfully gained buy in from her university and is now seconded 50% of her time to work on her social venture 2.5 days per week. Alongside a busy teaching schedule, since 2014, over 200 separate engagement activities have led to over 70,000 individual interactions with staff, students, communities and external organisations. Through MET MUnch she has led the development of a student enterprise network with a passion for sustainable and nutritious food, running training community pop up events and imaginative science projects. http://metmunch.com/
HIGHLY COMMENDED: HAMZA ARSBI, SCIENCE LEAGUE - STUDENT, UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER
A student who is seeking to transform education in Jordan and innovate the curriculum using STEM in particular to give the next generation of Jordanians the tools to overcome their own infrastructure barriers through science, technology, maths and engineering. Alongside his studies this person has developed a team to deliver an initiative which has conducted training workshops and science activities with students in seven cities across Jordan, established local clubs in five cities, and reached over 4000 students. http://www.sl.jo/
Outstanding Innovation Award
This award is to highlight the most innovative and potentially transformational solutions to social issues developed by staff, students or graduates
WINNER: JONATHAN GREEN & TEAM, PRE-SCHOOL AUTISM COMMUNICATION THERAPY (PACT) - STAFF, UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER
A staff member and team developing a social venture to take forward a pre school early intervention working with parents with children with autism, using structured video techniques to help them better recognise their autistic child’s altered behaviour traits. By working with parents rather than traditionally with children they are empowering parents with the skills to effectively support their children and create sustained change. The innovation has been rigorously tested through clinical research in partnerships with several UK based universities as well as Guys Hospital, St Thomas’ and wider NHS Trusts and is the first intervention to demonstrate a reduction of autism symptoms long term. They have a global strategy to roll out the services whilst maintaining high quality standards. http://research.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/pact/
Award collected by Laura Etchells -UMIP, University of Manchester on behalf of PACT
HIGHLY COMMENDED: ANDY TURNER & TEAM, HOPE 4 THE COMMUNITY - STAFF COVENTRY UNIVERSITY
A staff member and team developing a social venture has having significant impact through working with communities to adopt evidenced based self-management resources to bring hope, expertise and peer mentoring to people managing chronic conditions or long term disabilities. Their offline and online support has so far been applied to help a range of communities including people and families affected by Autism, MS and Cancer. They have an ambitious growth plan of national and potentially global reach with several hundred people trained in their approach already. https://hopeprogramme.coventry.ac.uk/
Award collected by the team
Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2017
This award is to highlight those ventures who have achieved outstanding impact in terms of innovation and reach, led by a team who are seeking to ensure long term sustainability
WINNER: JAMIE CRUMMIE, TOO GOOD TO GO - STUDENT QUEEN MARY'S UNIVERSITY OF LONDON
A student venture which was founded as a means of helping to reducing the 600,000 tonnes [WRAP, 2015] of edible food that gets wasted by the restaurant industry in the UK each year. Launched in June 2016 and supported by Queen Mary's University of London with a ‘Grow It’ award of £5000 and a place on their incubator programme ‘InQUBEate’, Too Good To Go is a smart response to the food thrown away annually by UK restaurants and has the aim of being adopted widely, to change how the industry deals with unsold meals, and reduce the amount of food going into landfill.
The way it works is that cafes, juice bars and restaurants register with an online app to become a supplier and list how many left-over meals they have at the end of the day and what they will cost. Users select what they want, set at affordable prices, pay for it through the app and collect their meal. Running alongside their commercial operations is their charitable arm - which is based on a Pay-It-Forward Scheme - which engages directly in redistributing food that would have otherwise been wasted from their partner restaurants to those who need it most. This function on the app allows users to donate £1 towards redistributing a meal to somebody in need which includes directly taking meals out to vulnerable on the streets. http://toogoodtogo.co.uk/
Award collected by Rachel Brown at QMUL on behalf of Too Good To Go
HIGHLY COMMENDED: BHAVAGAYA BAKSHI, C THE SIGNS - GRADUATE, KINGS COLLEGE LONDON
This venture developed by a graduate at Kings College London, is a multiplatform decision support tool that uses artificial intelligence mapped with the latest evidence to help General Practitioners (GPs) identify patients with cancer early. With estimates suggesting that by 2020 1 in 2 people will be diagnosed with cancer in the UK, the impact of this vital tool is clear. Diagnosing the disease remains extremely challenging and the complexity puts tens of thousands of lives at risk each year, while costing the NHS millions of pounds. The team which includes former GPs returning to further study, presented the tool at three cancer specific Conferences in the England, with resounding support from GPs that this is a ‘need to have tool. http://cthesigns.co.uk/
HEI RECOGNITION AWARDS
Innovation in delivery of support to Social Entrepreneurs
This award is to highlight the variety of methods and approaches that universities have developed to innovate awareness raising, support and resources for social entrepreneurs as well as create meaningful impact across universities, faculties, curriculum or wider audiences.
WINNER: KINGS COLLEGE LONDON
Kings College London runs a highly successful and innovative venture accelerator programme, measuring success against 3 key measures: individual skill development, commercial success of the start-ups (determined by revenue growth and investment raised) and social impact. It draws in diverse applicants from fields spanning medicine, natural sciences and international development. The programme is also open to alumni, up to 7 years post-KCL graduation. This year, six of 20 ventures in the venture accelerator programme are positively impacting the world around them. They also have a strong commitment to their locality comprising of the boroughs Lambeth, Southwark and this year are co-designing and running a business plan competition for disadvantaged young students with the Bright Ideas Trust, helping to extend social entrepreneurship education to those who otherwise wouldn’t be able to access it. Finally they have become a Yunus Social Business Centre partner and will be hosting Professor Yunus on campus later this year.
Award collected by Susan Trenholm on behalf of the team at Kings College London, which includes Ed Halliday and Peter Kingstone
HIGHLY COMMENDED: UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON
This institution have developed a range of innovations with a multi-faceted and multi partnership approach. for example they believe it is important to support the social innovation ecosystem as a whole rather than simply advocating the creation of new social ventures. They recognise 3 categories of social entrepreneur: Founders (who start new social ventures), Fixers (who increase the social impact of existing organisations) and Finders (who identify new technologies, models or policies for social impact). They have a fluid integration of curricular and extracurricular activities which are both local and international in scope and scale. In 2016-17 they had 250 students participate in their programmes. They have also led on the UK – India British Council backed transnational peer learning network involving universities in both countries and have supported an extensive range of universities globally to develop and enhance support for social entrepreneurs.
Innovation in impactful partnership development, building ecosystems of support where Social Entrepreneurs thrive
This award is to highlight new and innovative approaches of how collaborative HE sector partnerships are being developed to create purposeful application of social entrepreneurship, social innovation and social leadership within their regions or nationally, as a vehicle to create positive social change across universities and wider communities or society.
WINNER: OXFORD BROOKES UNIVERSITY
This institution has been a consistent leaders in partnership development to further the social entrepreneurship agenda. They are serious about their local role as a community anchor institution and thave been successfully developing close ties with other strategic organisations - local authorities, LEP and Health Trust. Social entrepreneurship therefore features strongly in the County Innovation strategy diverting attention and ultimately resources to support this institution and the close strategic and operational partnership with its neighbouring university. Internationally they are working both independently and through GSEN to establish international networks in Maylasia, China, South Korea, South Africa and various European countries.
They have established social innovation and social enterprise support programmes and their work is now recognised in their Teaching Excellence Framework submission where initial research supports the view that their work and similar cross curricular activity enhance student social mobility and capital particularly amongst students from lower socio-economic backgrounds.
Additionally the University’s strategic leadership team has now confirmed resources for their flagship programmes over the coming years, delivered in partnership ensuring sustained support for social entrepreneurs.
Award collected by Jeff Willmore on behalf of the team, who was also given an 'Outstanding Achievement Award' ahead of his forthcoming retirement. This was for his longstanding commitment to supporting social entrepreneurs and promoting and advancing social entrepreneurship regionally, nationally and internationally.
HIGHLY COMMENDED: QUEEN MARY'S UNIVERSITY OF LONDON
This institution has been developing a broad range of partnerships to innovate activities sustain impact and engage as many people as possible. This year they ran their first social enterprise focused bootcamp, 50 students from all subject disciplines sought to solve a selection of local social issues through the generation of social enterprises – they found this focused approach brought out more students who wouldn’t usually associate themselves with enterprise. 12 of these students are currently working on their social enterprises thanks to a partnership with a local a co-work space. They also launched a Social Enterprise Festival in partnership with another university to upskill local social enterprises by connecting them with research from academics, and to raise awareness of social enterprise to students. 20 events ran over 7 days and all were open to local residents and students from all London universities. 1000 visitors attended over the week.
HEI of the Year 2017
This award is to highlight those Universities that are leading the change as Anchor Institutions in social entrepreneurship in the HE sector and in their region, who are supporting and have exemplary progress in embedding a culture of social entrepreneurship across their institution.
WINNER: CUSE - COVENTRY UNIVERSITY
This institution practice what they preach and have developed CUSE, a social enterprise created to promote social innovation and enterprise. As a subsidiary of the University Group this gives it a strategic influence which it would not be able to obtain otherwise and is now the main way the University engages with social innovators and entrepreneurs from staff, students, graduates and the wider community. Within 3 years of launching they now have a comprehensive programme of activity that promotes social entrepreneurship which is demonstrating substantial social value as well as creating specialist tools and resources delivered by a committed staff team. Plus they hold the SE Mark. Highlights which stood out making them this year's winner include:
- Over 7,000 engagements with staff, students and the wider community through a year round wide ranging programme of talks, lectures, training, 1-2-1 advice and workshops
- Offering support to a growing cohort of 47 social enterprises in their own network & created a further 11 social enterprises in 2016/17
- Offering a sustained £50k grant programme for an annual social impact challenge and a proof of concept scheme
- An active collaborator in a core group of universities building on legacy of the UnLtd/HEFCE programmes via the SEE Changemaker Network
Award collected by the CUSE team and social entrepreneurs
HIGHLY COMMENDED: ASTON UNIVERSITY
Social enterprise is a key element of this institution’s mission. Areas of strength in social enterprise include specialist teaching and research faculty in the Economics, Finance and Entrepreneurship Department of their Business School and a partnership in a major European social enterprise research project. They have a national network of 1,300 growth businesses including 90 social enterprises are supported by the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses programme. They an active Enactus society, and a wide range of global opportunities for students and graduates to participate in initiatives. They lead a flagship business start-up programme which has been running for many years, in collaboration with three other universities in their City Region. Plus they jointly host the national Enterprise Research Centre (ERC), drives out new research insights and works to ensure research shapes better policies and practices to help SMEs to grow. Social Enterprise is an integral part of this work
Award collected by Paula Whitehouse on behalf of the team at Aston
Social Entrepreneurship Champion of the Year 2017
This award is to shine a spotlight on the talented individuals across institutions who are nurturing, embedding and promoting support for social entrepreneurs. They can be nominated from enterprise support teams, academic staff, students, graduates of from the wider community. They demonstrate a commitment to raising awareness of social entrepreneurship as well innovating and mainstreaming support.
WINNER: KEITH JEFFREY, CUSE - UNIVERSITY OF COVENTRY
Keith is a longstanding champion of social enterprise support, a peer who has been instrumental in prioritising this agenda locally and is also championing the agenda on behalf of the social enterprise and higher education sectors nationally to keep support for social entrepreneurs centre stage. They have taken on the complex challenge of developing a new social enterprise model for supporting social innovators and entrepreneurs and demonstrated the required levels of leadership and entrepreneurship to create a model of working that is achieving sustainable impact. It is through their leadership that the team has grown from zero in 2014 with no budget to a staff of 10 in 2017 with a budget of £1m. They have done this through creativity and innovation by engaging at senior level within the university and through development of partnerships externally.
They play a leading role in the SEE Change network and the Social Enterprise Mark HEI network and are collaborating with partners locally to deliver on their social enterprise place application. A true advocate and collaborator, they have been working with Midlands Enterprise University Group to develop an application to Access Foundation for the creation of a new social impact fund. This required working with 7 different Universities at a very senior level to develop a region wide approach to meeting the investment needs of social enterprises in the Midlands.
They are also delivering in curricular and extra – curricular support to their institutions and direct mentoring support to social ventures.
HIGHLY COMMENDED: BELINDA BELL, CAMBRIDGE SOCIAL VENTURES - UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE
Belinda has developed a social venture development programme that is markedly different from other entrepreneurial support available across their University, both in content and in the tone. The focus is on outreach beyond the University, with events and consistently reaching an impressively diverse audience.
They have embedded research into a practical programme of support for social entrepreneurs and in return, engagement programmes feed into ongoing research. Over the past 3 years, more than 500 entrepreneurs have accessed training and development as part of weekend residential activities and 100 ventures have been given intense ongoing incubation support. Of the entrepreneurs supported so far, more than 60% of participants are women and 29% are from minority ethnic backgrounds. To date, their top 50 ventures have raised more than £5million in investment, grants and donations and this champion has been particularly instrumental in helping ventures raise investment.
In addition they provide extensive teaching delivery on the MBA and Masters in Social Innovation and have provided support to institutions in various countries globally developing social incubators, entrepreneurs and providing peer support. They have also established a significant social innovation project fund and are supporting students to take consulting projects with social ventures.
GLOBAL HEI AWARD 2017
This new award introduced in 2017, is for staff and social leaders across the community of global universities creating impact and innovation through social entrepreneurship and have exemplary progress in embedding a culture of social entrepreneurship across their institution and wider partners
WINNER: RYERSON UNIVERSITY - CANADA
Ryerson university demonstrated the most comprehensive approach to supporting social entrepreneurship that the judges had ever seen – covering enterprise, innovation, curriculum, research and more, with established partnerships internally and externally to take support, innovation and impact forward in each of these areas. Canada's first Ashoka U campus, they have a robust and multi-disciplinary infrastructure across the university, including: the Office of Social Innovation; the John C. Eaton Chair in Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship; a network of 10 incubators (referred to as “zones” in our innovation ecosystem); and a curricular focus on innovation and entrepreneurship across every Faculty. Other significant zones includes the Social Ventures Zone, which focuses specifically on enterprises active in social, civic and environmental impact; the Centre for Urban Energy (CUE), which is the country’s first business incubator devoted solely to urban energy; iBoost, which works through the Masters in Engineering, Innovation and Entrepreneurship; and the Biomedical Zone that links health focused entrepreneurs with clinicians. Each zone provides peer-to-peer learning, coaching and mentoring, curated opportunities to meet venture capitalists, on-demand skills and learning modules, co-working spaces, and access to seed funding.
Ryerson recognizes that there are many kinds of innovators. Some people innovate for commercial reasons; others advocate new thinking and approaches to create positive social change; some do both. This encompasses creative, cultural, environmental and social innovations and enterprises that can enrich the fabric of society and improve quality of life, as well as innovations that create new companies, products and jobs, and produce novel social and civic ventures. Innovation at Ryerson is recognized by robust programs, research activity and experiential learning. These programs include:
RECODE: Ryerson University received a $500,000 grant from the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation which has provided seed funding to over 60 social innovation startups. (see attached RECODE report)
Social Enterprise Demonstration Fund (SEDF): Ryerson University received $500,000 from the provincial government to support social entrepreneurs in their early-stage ventures. Grants of up to $5,000 and $15,000 are awarded for ventures in the market validation and market readiness stages, respectively.
Partnership for Change: The RBC Immigrant, Diversity and Inclusion Project: A $1.75-million gift from Royal Bank of Canada supports a seven-year initiative to support faculty research and student projects around the themes of: immigrant employment and entrepreneurship, social engagement of immigrants, immigrants and mental health, and immigrant preferences and consumer behaviour.
Norman Esch Engineering Innovation & Entrepreneurship Awards: These awards have helped 118 undergraduate and graduate students develop their businesses and to advance products, inventions and technologies relevant to the Canadian economy and society.
All in all a worthy winner and one many institution can learn from whatever their stage in supporting social entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders!
Award collected by Jean-Paul Boudreau on behalf of the team and institution
HIGHLY COMMENDED: O P JINDAL GLOBAL UNIVERSITY - INDIA
Being recognised as an institution who are creating waves across the wider HE sector in India and globally through digital partners, online curriculum and collaborative partnerships. Social Innovation underpins their work and the Jindal Centre for Social Innovation & Entrepreneurship (JSiE) opened in September 2014 is a hub for catalysing social impact through innovation challenges, research and early-stage social startup incubation. One unique aspect of JSiE’s approach is its efforts to develop data driven tools to identify and support aspiring and early-stage social entrepreneurs, as well as reach diverse communities. The institution has significant national and global partnerships, for example, with the support of the British Council, JSiE launched a series of online courses on social enterprise through the FutureLearn platform, in partnership with Middlesex University Business School and the social enterprise Living in Minca. This free series of massive open online courses (MOOCs) brought together an international teaching team to develop course materials with global relevance, presented to learners from all over the world through an interactive, online interface. Since 2016, 28,325 students have registered and 7,697 students have actively participated in the three-course series. http://www.jgu.edu.in and http://www.jsie.in/
Award collected by Jeremy Wade - Founding Director of JSiE, on behalf of the team and institution
HIGHLY COMMENDED: SOCIAL INNOVATION LAB, IN PARTNERSHIP WITH LAHORE UNIVERSITY OF MANAGEMENT AND SCIENCES - PAKISTAN
The Social Innovation Lab has had a direct impact on 3.9 million people over the last 4 years through our various programs and the social entrepreneurs they have supported. Their incubator ‘The Hatchery’ has worked with over a hundred startups, out which 76 have graduated and 52 are currently operational. The ventures they have supported to start up range across sectors, support marginalised communities and are developing ambitious ventures which can address societal problems at scale. They pride themselves on their robust selection process and support for social entrepreneurs and have extensive and diverse networks of experienced mentors from a broad range of sectors who bring real world expertise and connections to enhance the support offered to social innovators and entrepreneurs. Strategically they have been developing partnerships nationally and globally to create opportunities for entrepreneurs, increase reach and profile and draw in resources and investment to further their work. https://www.socinnlab.org
A great range of social entrepreneurs and supporters applied again this year and we thank everyone for their time and energy for applying and sharing learning and insight on the impact being created by the talent and commitment from all involved.
We look forward to announcing the Recognition Awards for 2018 in the New Year so watch this space.....