Introduction to Social Enterprise

Introduction to Social Enterprise

March 1st – April 16th, 2021
Application Deadline: February 2, 2021

Online Delivery 

There has been growing interest in social enterprise as a vehicle to create social change while addressing the age-old question of sustainability. Beginning with an assessment of the emergence and history of the social entrepreneurship movement, this course will cover topics such as the for-profit and not-for-profit divide, the need for varied capital at different stages, and aspects of institutional and personal leadership. The course will be a combination of theory, introduction to tools and approaches, case studies, and online interactions with social entrepreneurs and the various institutions and organisations that support them. 

Benefits and Learning Objectives 

This course will help you: 

  • understand the context under which social enterprises are emerging as well as the overall landscape of actors involved; 
  • develop an understanding of the different stages of social enterprise evolution and pathways to scaling; 
  • become familiar with aspects of social enterprise design, resource mobilization strategies as well as developing monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) systems; and 
  • connect to and network with like-minded individuals from various organizations around the world who are trying to think outside the box. 

This course will help your organization: 

  • develop a more nuanced understanding of what social enterprises are all about, the benefits as well as the challenges and pitfalls; 
  • develop staff capacity to better understand the necessary pre-conditions for social enterprise development as well as possible transition pathways; and 
  • receive an in-depth introduction to successful and emerging social enterprise models from across the world.   

Time Requirement 

You should prepare to dedicate six to eight hours per week over the course of seven weeks. 

This course will use blended model of delivery which includes a combination of seven weekly live sessions, asynchronous learning activities, and independent work time. Participants are expected to engage with their peers in the online space to complete course assignments.  

Technology Requirement 

  • Reliable internet access (high speed is recommended) 
  • Speakers and microphone 

 Who should take this course? 

This course is ideal for development leaders and change makers who are grappling with questions of how to balance the social mission with the issue of sustainability of their organizations and are seeking creative solutions. 


Tuition Fees for the course will be $650. Coady Institute strives to ensure access that participants working with marginalized communities around the world have access to its courses. This is made possible through the provision of bursaries that are funded by many individual and institutional donors. Partial bursaries of $300 are available for international candidates. Those receiving a bursary will be responsible for paying the balance of $350 CAD before the designated deadline.

Full Bursaries of $650 are available from the Centre for Employment Innovation for eligible applicants from Nova Scotia. This includes applicants working for (or in a Board Director position in) a program or agency engaged in employment services delivery (priority is given to Nova Scotia Works centres) as well as those engaged in social innovation activities to alleviate poverty, strengthen livelihoods and create more equitable employment and entrepreneurial opportunities with and for systemically oppressed groups, including African Nova Scotians, People of African Descent, First Nations, Indigenous Peoples, recent immigrants, racialized persons, persons with disability, and persons on Employment and Income Support Assistance.


Coady International Institute does not accept third party applications. Individuals need to submit their application via Coady’s website and should use caution when approached by those offering services to complete the application and admissions process.