Semester on Social Entrepreneurship.


Social Entrepreneurship

Offered every spring semester. Classes begin in mid-January, end in early May and are held in New York City on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Applications are due by October 10.

An interview with the program director will be scheduled for finalists as part of the application process.

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New York City is both a business world capital and a hub of global social activism. In this course, you will spend two days a week in the Big Apple, studying social entrepreneurship. Visit and interact with changemakers in large nonprofits and small grassroots organizations in a range of sectors, including arts, education and international development. Learn how these organizations are working to address a range of social challenges, such as poverty, human rights abuses and environmental damage.

Examine the ways social entrepreneurs inspire change. Discover how nonprofit organizations apply business techniques to address the world’s most serious problems. Determine when and if nonprofits are the appropriate institutions to tackle social issues. Explore which economic factors drive nonprofit decision making. Then, design your own solution to a real-world challenge, working with an actual social change organization.

Required Courses

You are required to take the following two courses for a total of 8 credits:

ECON/BST/PSCI 286 – Social Entrepreneurship: Theorizing Global Trends
The aim of this course is to explore the concept of social entrepreneurship, with an emphasis on the need for an interdisciplinary, historical and global approach to understanding the trajectory that led to the notion of entrepreneurship increasingly being applied to activities that emphasize the importance of social change. Students will learn about the diversity of entrepreneurial organizations focusing on social change. A second analytical focus will be on critically examining the question of how and why various societies approach the issue of social challenges in a variety of ways, with a particular emphasis on why, both in the US and in the global context social entrepreneurship is increasingly identified as central to institutions with a social mission.

ECON/BST/PSCI 287 – Applied Analysis of Social Entrepreneurship
This course compliments Econ 286, with a focus on hands on approaches to social entrepreneurship, as well as on obtaining the skills needed to successfully work for social change. The course will consist of a series of field trips, skills workshops and a group project that involves working with a social change organization on a current challenge they are facing.