Identifying the keys to developing for-profit social enterprises

Over the last years, a profusion of business models and structures have emerged as a response to different social and environmental challenges. New types of corporate (for-profit) entities with a social mission, such as the benefit corporations in the US, enterprises à mission in France, or community interest companies in the UK, have developed rapidly and blurred the boundaries between traditional nonprofit organizations and classic for-profit companies.

Professor François Maon (a member of ICOR), and his coauthors Coline Serres and Marek Hudon (Université libre de Bruxelles) have recently carried out a comprehensive international study of social corporations – for-profit entities that have the social mission formally stated in their articles/bylaws. Their work aims to provide a clear overview/typology of the types of corporations that have developed in different countries and their legal and governance structures; and secondly to identify the key mechanisms that enable such companies to be successful in pursuing their dual mission.

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