Sustainability through Market Creation and Access: Exploring Opportunities, Barriers, and Strategies for African Social Enterprises
Despite their societal significance, social enterprises in Africa face grave challenges in accessing markets or creating new ones to achieve their social objectives while ensuring commercial viability. These challenges stem from limited resources, inadequate infrastructure, corruption, and regulatory hurdles prevalent in many African countries, which make it difficult for enterprises to achieve their social goals through classic business mechanisms.
However, with the emerging African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA), the potential of disruptive technologies, and sustainability initiatives—such as the circular economy—, social enterprises in Africa have a unique opportunity to organize afresh and leverage their innovative capacities for new market creation and market access.
The leading question for our two-day workshop was: How can social enterprises in Africa create new markets or access existing ones in a way that is socially, and environmentally—as well as commercially—sustainable?
Together with our expert speakers, we will explored opportunities, barriers, and strategies for African social enterprises to organize sustainably. The workshop facilitated knowledge-sharing among established social entrepreneurs in the field, policymakers and development practitioners also discussed regulatory frameworks and innovative approaches.
During the workshop, practitioners and academic experts conducted a practical session on creating sustainable products and services. Participants received guidance on developing new offerings that can sustain their efforts to address societal challenges and meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
You can watch this and other past sessions again for free, if registered, by subscribing to our YouTube page.