Over the past decade, social enterprises, businesses with purpose and social impact investments, have been gaining traction in Israel. Organizations and corporates with social objectives use business strategies to achieve their social values while generating financial profits. Various business models and investment models are being used to promote social causes. These initiatives are increasing the resources invested in social targets and, as a result, expand the scope of social activism.
However, the ecosystem of social impact investments in Israel is still relatively small. While many of the social entrepreneurs entering this field are highly motivated, they lack the skills, professional capacities and training to create a solid enterprise.
To expand the impact investment and social enterprise markets in Israel and mainstream them into the greater economic system, impediments facing the social-business entrepreneurs must be resolved.
This challenge must be tackled on two interrelated levels: The first is the creation of an academic infrastructure for the development and management of social enterprises and social impact, designed to provide groundbreaking research on social impact investments while, simultaneously, providing social entrepreneurs the professional training they need. The second is the formation of an ecosystem combining relevant stakeholders in the field, including government and corporates, service providers and professional consultants (finance, marketing, HR), that will support social entrepreneurs and impact investments.
As social, economic, and environmental responsibility was recognized as an emerging core value of the business world, The COLLMAN’s business school established the center in order to provide its students and graduates with practical and theoretical tools to understand current relevant trends and models, assist in increasing awareness and in creating and disseminating academic knowledge and research practices, and provide a platform for training and developing the methodologies necessary for social enterprises.
The center offers an MBA degree specializing in social business and impact investment, and courses in the field are offered to students from outside the specific specialization. It further offers practicum programs placing students within social enterprises for hands-on experience.
a leading academic and applied research center, providing a professional academic address for all stakeholders in the field of impact investing and social businesses in Israel.
The Academic Center pursuits its objective through creating ground-breaking academic knowledge and applied research practices, and by providing the platform for training and developing the methodologies necessary for social enterprises in different stages.
This is developed specifically in five channels-
- An academic curriculum — providing an MBA degree specializing in impact investment and social business, and courses in the field, offered also to students from outside the faculty.
- Academic applied research in the field of social investment and social enterprises.
- Accelerator — a mentoring program for social enterprises using academics and mentors from the social enterprise field and an incubator program— seeding beginner social enterprises.
- Eco System — providing an academic professional address for enabling actors and stakeholders such as government, consulting firms, networks and universities.
The Academic Center develops the academic infrastructure and builds the ecosystem needed for the field of impact investments and social enterprises in Israel, in partnership with Dualis Fund and the well-established, renowned School of Business Administration at THE COLLMAN and with the substantial support of The Edmond de Rothschild Foundation, Casesarea.
The Edmond de Rothschild Foundation
The Edmond de Rothschild Foundation works to create a just and prosperous Israeli society by promoting equal opportunities and excellence in higher education. As part of the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations global network, our mission is rooted in a legacy of giving, founded on humanism, inclusion, and the pursuit of excellence.
We identify social challenges and help develop innovative solutions, while building creative partnerships and evaluating results and social impact. The Caesarea lands, donated by Baron Edmond de Rothschild, provide the firm economic basis for the work of the Foundation, which advances its mission along two strategic axes: Maximizing higher education for periphery populations and fostering excellence.
Maximizing higher education – Activities along this axis aim to promote equal opportunities by offering all of Israeli society’s diverse population groups the possibility of attaining higher education and joining the workforce in employment compatible with individual education and skills.
Fostering excellence – Activities along this axis focus on promoting the academic and social fields by fostering excellence among groundbreaking agents of change. The foundation promotes the social impact investment and social business ecosystem in Israel as an innovative arena of social action.
Dualis Fund was founded in 2009 as a vehicle to promote a charitable cause – the investment of funds to support social entrepreneurs in the establishment of successful social businesses. Registered as a nonprofit in Israel, Dualis Fund focuses on creating and supporting social businesses that teach life skills and offer vocational training, employment, and job creation for people on the margins, helping them build meaningful and purposeful lives. The organization’s investment approach includes fostering traditional, for-profit businesses, such as social cafes, retail clothing stores, and software services with social objectives, engaging professional social workers to support at-risk individuals who are trained alongside a normative workforce to earn, achieve, and aspire to achieve a productive life in their field of choice.
Today, Dualis Fund is a partner in the operation of 14 active social businesses that employ a total of 100 at-risk, low income individuals each year. The program has 300 graduates; program assessments show that 70-90% of the participants continue to be independent and productive citizens five years after graduation. The organization has received full capital return on four social business investments, and two businesses are paying dividends. Annual turnover of the social businesses amounts to $10 million.
A social business is a for-profit enterprise that uses business tools to address social issues. The business deliberately chooses to waive the business objective of maximizing profits in order to promote social goals, while also working towards a return on investment. As a national leader in the social business space in Israel, Dualis Fund advocates publicly for the acceptance of the social business model by raising public awareness for impact investing, developing the ecosystem necessary for broader scale, and working with every level of government to develop a regulatory path that will facilitate the creation of a social investment market.
Business Administration School at the College of Management Academic Studies, THE COLLMAN
The School of Business Administration at THE COLLMAN is the largest in Israel. Established in 1978, it trains more than 4,500 undergraduate and graduate students annually. It offers a wide range of programs, including up-to-date niche courses and unique specialty programs such as financing, marketing, advertising, information technologies, and corporate responsibility.
The school collaborates with business and industry organizations on various projects, including the development of marketing campaigns, business incubators, specialty courses, and internships in a range of organizations in the financial market and beyond it. Its partners include Ness Technologies, Bank Leumi, Unilever, Adidas, Excellence Investment House, Super-Pharm, Neviot, and many others
The School of Business Administration continuously updates its curricula and is committed to initiating new courses according to the changing market demands, thus enabling all its students to realize their individual potential by exploring and becoming professional in any field they choose. The school strives to maintain a meaningful, formative, and valuable educational experience, and places great emphasis on a supportive climate for learning, ensuring optimal learning conditions.
Guided by concepts of entrepreneurship and innovativeness, the School of Business Administration operates NOVUS, the Center of Entrepreneurship, as its focal point for entrepreneurial activity. The Center provides professional tools, support, networking options, and importantly, attends to each of its students and graduates personally. The Center has robust collaborations with academic and business communities in Israel and worldwide.
Social, economic, and environmental responsibility is emerging as a core value of the business world. To provide its students and graduates with practical and theoretical tools to understand current relevant trends and models, the School established the Academic Corporate Social Responsibility Center.