The Social Enterprise Zoo
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The Social Enterprise Zoo

A Guide for Perplexed Scholars, Entrepreneurs, Philanthropists, Leaders, Investors, and Policymakers

Edited by Dennis R. Young, Elizabeth A.M. Searing and Cassady V. Brewer

The Social Enterprise Zoo employs the metaphor of the zoo to gain a more comprehensive understanding of social enterprise – especially the diversity of its forms; the various ways it is organized in different socio-political environments; how different forms of enterprise behave, interact, and thrive; and what lessons can be drawn for the future development and study of organizations that seek to balance social or environmental impact with economic success. Recommended for students, researchers, policymakers, entrepreneurs and managers of social purpose organizations.
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Chapter 2: Designing the zoo

Dennis R. Young and Wesley Longhofer

Abstract

Modern zoos delight some and mystify others, as does the metaphor used in this book. In this chapter, we unpack our metaphor of the social enterprise zoo through a series of questions: What animals belong in the zoo? How does the zoo function? How is the zoo to be governed and managed? And, how should we measure the successes and failures of the zoo? We offer our own exhibit of the social enterprise frontier as one possibility for setting the boundaries of the zoo, and designing it to accommodate appropriate animals and habitats, control predation, and achieve its social mission.

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