NEW DELHI: Jindal Global University’s Centre for Social Innovation & Entrepreneurship (JSiE) brought-in stakeholders to deliberate on how social enterprises can be the driving engine for empowering women in India in an event held at the New Delhi Institute of Management (NDIM) on 7th April. Key participants were women and men from civil society organisations and social enterprises, as well as academics and policy experts working on these themes in different countries.
This event is a part of ongoing partnership of Jindal Global University’s social innovation initiative, JindalCentre for Social Innovation & Entrepreneurship and British Council to conduct a five-country research project on social enterprise and women empowerment.
The British Council, which works extensively to promote social enterprise around 28 countries in the world, co-hosted this dialogue on Women’s Empowerment and how women can drive the development of the social enterprise. According to a study by the British Council, 24% of social enterprises in India are women-led, in contrast to 8.9% of conventional firms.
Sameer Chaturvedi, who heads Social Enterprise portfolio of British Council in India, said that, “Gender equality is a crucial strand for British Council’s work in India and our work in social enterprise complements it through research, capacity building and policy engagement.”
Delhi is the final location from among 10 locations in India where dialogues have been held during March and April. These dialogs form part of a larger research project carried out by the British Council on Social Enterprise and Women’s Empowerment across five countries – India, US, UK, Brazil and Pakistan.
Jeremy Wade, who leads the Jindal Centre for Social Innovation & Entrepreneurship, said that, “Everyone wins when we have more social enterprises led by women. We hope this research will deepen our understanding of how best to support women in social enterprise across India and the world.”
Key outcomes from the dialogue were that there is a strong case for:
1. Having role models and mentorship platforms for social enterprises with a focus on women’s empowerment
2. Governmental policies that recognise social enterprises as a unique legal entity and incentivise their founders, including women
According to Prof. Teena Singh, Registrar NDIM, “It was a great confluence of all stakeholders representing the social sector with deliberations aimed at upliftment of women entrepreneurs in the social sector promoting social entrepreneurship in Women graduates from MBA Colleges.”
The research will utilise the knowledge of experts in each country to understand the different types of social enterprise activity, and the different challenges facing women and girls. It will provide information and recommendations for policy-makers, networks, funders and support providers. The final report is expected to be launched in June.