Note: This report is completed by NPI (Non-profit Incubator) who was commissioned by the British Council to conduct
a national research on the social enterprises in China in 2008.
The general report of social enterprise in China
The concept and studies of social enterprise were formally introduced to China merely 4 – 5
years ago. Relevant works, studies, forums, symposiums and conferences from 2004
promoted the theoretical studies and the practice of social enterprises in China. However,
“social enterprise” is comparatively a new phenomenon in developed countries, which is still
evolving quite fast with no fixed model. So it’s easy to understand that why even now the
concept is not only ambiguous for the general public, but also quite new for academics and the
NGO sector in China. The debate on the concept of social enterprise keeps going on, but the
practice still lags behind.
In this report, 9 Chinese social enterprise candidates from NGO world were introduced,
including Xingeng workshop, Beijing Stars and Rain Education Research Institute, Sowosky,
Hua Dan Workshop, Raleigh China, Hetong, Fuping Housekeeping Vocational School,
Hongying Nursery Education Counselling Co., ltd and Beijing Cultural Development Center for
Rural Women. These organizations adapt more innovative ways to tackle social problems.
They attach much importance to keep good communication with their beneficiaries and
stakeholders and have aspiring leaders with Chrisma and devotion who can attract employees
and volunteers to work for the mission of their organizations. However, most of them face the
challenges of funding shortage and lack of business skills.
In a social enterprise questionnaire survey among local NGOs which have the potential to
become social enterprise in the future (sent out 48 questionnaires and got back 30 replies),
around half of the interviewees classify social enterprise as some type of NGO; approx. 1/3 of
the interviewees cla