Social entrepreneurship is expected to be the next big thing to influence India as the country juggles to achieve a balance between a growing GDP growth, ensuring inclusive growth and attempting to address issues ranging from education, energy efficiency to climate change.

“A social entrepreneur is an amalgamation of values displayed in Mother Teresa’s compassion and Richard Branson’s sharp business prowess”, says Nishant Sarawgi, Strategic Partnerships and Marketing Manager, National Social Entrepreneurship Forum (NSEF) a youth-focused NGO.

Social entrepreneurs are agents of change but with an entrepreneurial approach. “He is an individual with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social problems with a strong non-negotiable focus to solving it and chooses an entrepreneurial approach to solve by using entrepreneurial systems and processes”, adds Nishant. “Social entrepreneurship is the sector that is going to be a challenging field for innovators and leaders. It has just opened up and has already started showing signs of success by generating around three trillion dollar turnover globally”, says Nishant.

“People, government, corporations and funding agencies worldwide have realised that this is a way to achieve sustainable development and have started encouraging social entrepreneurs and innovators in several ways”, he said. “In India, social entrepreneurship has been gaining ground, more recently in the last three years with more and more youth evincing interest in the field, including those from prestigious IIMs and IITs”, says 24-year-old Nishant.

According to Neelima Chhiber, a social entrepreneur, the NGO model had worked very effectively in areas like healthcare and education but had not done too well when it came to livelihood. The social enterprise model, however, has been able to effectively deliver in generating livelihood, especially in connecting rural producer and urban consumers.

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