The Essence and Dynamics of Social Entrepreneurship: Case Study of “Can You”, China
Social entrepreneurship drives social innovations and works toward goals which enhance the capabilities and capacities of the communities through building sustainable organizations. This paper explains, through the analysis of theories from the literature, the meaning of Social Entrepreneurship and then highlights its characteristics and success factors. The paper subsequently demonstrates these theoretical variables in a real world setting, specifically with the case study of the organization, “Can You”, built by a physically challenged individual, Mr. Zheng Weining, for a small disabled community in Shen Zhen, People’s Republic of China. It shows the reflection of the theory of Social Entrepreneurship, its characteristics and the success factors in a real situation. A critical analysis of the theories of Social Entrepreneurship was carried out and then the history, logic, success factors and characteristics of the organization, “Can You” in Shenzhen, China, were highlighted. The case study was developed by reading the reports and publications of “Can You” and a field visit to “Can You” and the case writers took in-depth interviews of the entrepreneurial founder and some of the staff members. The paper shows a positive connection between the theories and practices. “Can You” has proven how the entrepreneur-founder brought out the potential of people with disabilities by providing capabilities, motivation, technology, employment and a barrier-free environment. It is a unique example of how a social entrepreneur dreams, comes up with a vision and then translates that vision into action.
Key words: Social Entrepreneurship, characteristics, success factors, Can You, Challenges