Social Enterprise Academy International CIC is a community interest company limited by shares registered in Scotland Company No. 544394
Thank you to all stakeholders that have invested in making learning and development available for social enterprise and the third sector
We are hugely grateful for your continued support.
Key strategic investment in the resilience and growth of Scotland's enterprising third sector for over 10 years, supported development of the Social Enterprise in Education programme, and implementation of our international growth strategy
Funded key programmes in rural Scotland to reach vulnerable communities and enabled us to implement our international growth strategy
Provided key investment to enable our growth strategy and social licence development
Provided key investment to enable our growth strategy and social licence development.
Provided key support and advice to enable our growth strategy and social licence development
Vision & Mission
A society which combines economic activity with community benefit, led by dynamic social entrepreneurs wherever we may find them.
To contribute to this change through learning and development.
People stepping forward to affect social change need support
Creating sustainable social businesses that deliver high value social and environmental impact is hard. Social entrepreneurs and ethical leaders at all levels need support to develop their own practice of leadership and entrepreneurship, and to develop the talent in their organisations.
Alongside business support infrastructure, finance and networks, the Academy offers a powerful style of learning and development. Learners build the knowledge and skills, clarity and confidence to respond to their current challenges and seize opportunities.
Using peer learning techniques based on strengths, safe facilitation, peer support and space for reflection, we provide learning and development that goes beyond training.
For individuals, organisations and communities, the difference can be transformational.
Tailor-made, flexible and participative training that is inclusive rather than prescriptive. The Academy is more people-centred than any other course of learning I have ever had.
In our first 10 years we supported over 7,500 people with learning and development opportunities
We are a social enterprise and charity, operating a sustainable business model in Scotland. Our teams serve urban and rural Southern Scotland and remote communities in the Highlands and Islands.
Our tutor network is spread across the whole country enabling us to deliver programmes in communities everywhere.
We have worked with over 2,871 public, private and third sector organisations, across varied sectors from health, sport and environment to creative industries.
Key statistics 2004 - 2018
- 12,816 learners from over 2,871 organisations
- Delivered over 1,064 programmes
- 30 associate tutors (practitioners and specialists) from across Scotland
- Worked with over 1000 primary, secondary and additional support needs schools
- Supported over 2000 teachers to understand social enterprise
- Delivered learning on every island in the Highlands
Key moments at the Academy 2004 - 2014
Established by the social enterprise support organisations Senscot, UnLtd and CEiS, along with the Scottish Government.
The Academy's remit was to fill the gap in support for social entrepreneurs and the wider third sector around personal development, leadership and entrepreneurship. They recognised that these were vital to complement existing business support and training on offer to contribute to an increasingly enterprising and resilient Scotland.
Funded by Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the European Social Fund to provide learning programmes in fragile and remote communities, and increase the participation of excluded groups in the workforce.
Partnered with the Scottish Government's Determined to Succeed to provide the Social Enterprise in Education programme.
Partnered with other third sector support organisations to deliver Just Enterprise, the support programme for the enterprising third sector.
In a report by Her Majesty's Inspectorate in Education (HMIe) the Academy received four out of seven ratings as 'excellent', and three as 'very good. This is the best assessment by HMIe of any organisation in Scotland's Third Sector.
Began to develop projects and programmes in other countries, leading to our social franchising strategy to ensure our long term sustainability and social impact.
Celebrated 10 years of learning!
Currently replicating through social franchising in Europe, Africa, Australia and Asia.
Social Enterprise Code of Practice
The Social Enterprise Academy has signed up to the Social Enterprise Code of Practice
The Code aims to develop as a benchmark for the way social enterprises operate in Scotland. It outlines a set of criteria, values and behaviours that help to define what social enterprises are.
- Social enterprises are businesses whose primary objective is to achieve social and environmental benefit
- Regardless of its legal form, the constitution of a social enterprise will include the requirement that profits are reinvested in the business or in the beneficiary community – and not distributed to owners/shareholders/investors
- The constitution will always require that on dissolution, the assets of the social enterprise are redirected appropriately – this could include social enterprises with similar aims and objectives
- Taken together these two provisions are referred to as the 'asset lock' – this is the defining characteristic of a social enterprise
- Social enterprises are distinguished from the private sector by virtue of the asset lock
- Social enterprises are differentiated from those charities and voluntary organisations in the third sector which do not aspire to financial independence through trading
- Social enterprises are distinct from the public sector and cannot be the subsidiary of a public body
The term 'social enterprise' comes out of values developed throughout the history of our social economy. Its core principle is that economic activity should work for the common good – rather than the unlimited private gain of a few.
This locates social enterprise within the wider objective of changing the way society operates. Various social movements have contributed their DNA to its practice. These are some of the values and behaviours we have come to expect from each other.
Social enterprises are businesses founded on fundamental core values – that social fairness and the protection of the planet should be pre-conditions of all economic activity – with all business practices expected to be honest and fair.
They are good employers – trying to offer a good workplace experience, aiming to pay a 'living wage', and having flatter pay structures than the private sector.
From Co-ops and Mutual's, social enterprises have learned about common ownership and democratic governance.
From Development Trusts and the community business movement, social enteprises have learned about bottom up responses to social problems and how they empower local communities.
Within the common sense of running a business – social enterprises try to help and support one another – in the spirit of the Open Source IT community. They should also, where possible, encourage the practice of intra-trading i.e. procuring from within the sector itself.
International Document Download
Thank you for your interest in Social Enterprise Academy International, please view and download the documents below.
We are the Future: Social Enterprise in Education Wee Issue - in collaboration with Big Issue
Replication Case Study
The Social Enterprise Academy is part of a world-class ecosystem of support for Scotland's third sector in and was first invited to replicate in 2012
In 2016 we completed a successful replication pilot with support from Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the British Council, and with financial investment from Social Investment Scotland and Big Issue Invest.
Core to replicating is enabling partners around the world to develop sustainable businesses, adapted to each local context. The next phase will see increased sharing of innovation, skills and teams across a growing network of hubs.
Meet & Join the Team
Our core team supports local Hubs to provide sustainable, efficient and high-quality learning programmes.
By sharing central skills, knowledge and systems we can keep local delivery cost-effective and focused on running programmes.
And by providing a Global Learning Lab we're also ensuring that we all benefit from the experience and new developments from around the world.
We're here to support people and organisations enabling social change.
We do this through learning and development programmes focused on leadership, enterprise, personal development and social impact.
- We work at local and national levels
- Our programmes enable learners to share and learn together, at all stages of personal and organisational growth
- With a successful track record in Scotland, we are now replicating internationally as a social franchise
When I went in to the course I had my sights on a bit of paper at the end. But what I got what so much more. It was more about the insight I got into myself. I realised it's up to me to develop myself as a leader everyday.