ProjectStories about us: A narrative approach for social entrepreneurs

Project background

Social entrepreneurs reassemble players in an ecosystem in new and innovative ways. These ecosystems are complex, as the actors, e.g. governments, investors or customers often speak different languages. A common understanding of the realities can be difficult to achieve in traditional workshop formats that are based on simple know-how transfer. Alan Fleming, Empowering People award winner and founder of aquaculture company The Fish Farm, for example, needs to convince communities to install fish farms, banks to finance the investment, and consumers to buy the fish that is not part of their customary diets. Thus, it is essential for Alan to tell his story reflecting complex systems.

Project objective

Together with Siemens Stiftung, adelphi, GIGA Institut and Stuttgart Media University, Endeva developed the project “Stories about us”. It allows social entrepreneurs to tell their stories, complemented by perspectives from other players in the ecosystem. At the same time, the project developed a methodology based on storytelling that enables entrepreneurs, as well as other players in the ecosystem, to look at the business from different perspectives.

Project result

The project takes an exploratory and action-led approach. Three main end-products are part of this project:

  1. Story of Alan Fleming, Fish Farm, South Africa
  2. A self-consulting tool for entrepreneurs
  3. A workshop methodology to simulate business ecosystems

The project has been implemented in a workshop on how to tell the business narrative for social entrepreneurs as part of the SEED Forum in Nairobi.