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2023/2024  KAN-CCMVI2115U  Social Entrepreneurship and Business Model Innovation

English Title
Social Entrepreneurship and Business Model Innovation

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration Summer
Start time of the course Summer
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Min. participants 30
Max. participants 60
Study board
Study Board for cand.merc. and GMA (CM)
Course coordinator
  • Anne-Karen Hüske - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
  • Kai Hockerts - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
For academic questions related to the course, please contact course responsible Kai Hockerts (kho.msc@cbs.dk).
Main academic disciplines
  • CSR and sustainability
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovation
Teaching methods
  • Blended learning
Last updated on 22-11-2023

Relevant links

Learning objectives
At the end of the course you should be able to reflect critically on the social business model your group will develop in this course. In particular you will be required to:
  • Differentiate between social enterprise and social innovation mode and argue for selecting one mode as the basis for your group’s social business model.
  • Describe the factors driving group work behavior and its performance outcomes in social business modeling and apply these to your group’s experiences.
  • Contrast the hybrid strategies used to identify social business opportunities and formulate a strategy for how your group generates complementarities.
  • Discuss different forms of impact investing and argue which are most appropriate for your social business model.
  • Contrast different ways in which your social business model can be scaled up or replicated and determine the most appropriate choice.
  • Evaluate the applicability of social impact assessment tools and evaluate how their use affects the performance of your social business model.
Course prerequisites
Completed Bachelor degree or equivalent
Social Entrepreneurship and Business Model Innovation:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Release of assignment The Assignment is released in Digital Exam (DE) at exam start
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
The 1st retake is a 72-hour, maximum 10-pages home assignment.
If the number of registered candidates for the make-up examination/re-take examination warrants that it may most appropriately be held as an oral examination, the programme office will inform the students that the make-up examination/re-take examination will be held as an oral examination instead.
Description of the exam procedure

Draw on the organizational theories discussed in the class and apply them to carry out a critical analysis of your social entrepreneurship business plan both in terms of the result (the business plan) as well as the process (group work experience). The evaluation of the reflection paper will be based on your ability to reflect on the learning objectives and apply these to both your business plan and its development process by drawing on relevant academic literature. Please find the formal exam requirements here:  https://studentcbs.sharepoint.com/sites/CoursesAndExams/SitePages/en/Formal-requirements.aspx.


Pre-Assignment during June: 

Please also note that 3-week summer university courses require the completion of a pre-assignment during the month of June. So please make sure to plan in time for this task during the 4 weeks before the course starts.

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

Social Entrepreneurship describes the discovery and sustainable exploitation of opportunities to create business models which address humanity’s social and environmental challenges. Social entrepreneurship generates disequilibria in market and non-market environments, by finding ways of turning societal problems into complementary assets. The course will develop capabilities in social opportunity identification as well as social enterprise modeling.



Description of the teaching methods
This intensive three-week course uses a mix of lecturing, firm visits with Copenhagen-based social enterprises and applied group work to maximize student learning. As part of this course you will work in diverse teams, allowing you to reflect critically on a social business model that you develop throughout the course. This experiential learning pedagogy culminates in the preparation of an investment ready social business model, which will be presented as part of a final pitch event, thus allowing you to acquire impact investing competencies – a skill set the Financial Times predicts is in increasing demand by employers causing “a real war on talent” (FT, 5 June 2021). The course is highly interactive with the corresponding expectation that students engage actively. Since this is an intensive 3-week course it is essential that you plan enough time every week both for class preparation (10-12 hours per week), attending lectures (12-14 hours per week) and group work after class (10-12 hours per week). An intensive 3-week ISUP course is thus not made for students who are working part or full-time while also attending the summer university.
Feedback during the teaching period
The course will be held in one of the CBS Studios. These spaces are designed for active and student-centered learning. Groups will receive feedback from instructors as well as their peers in real time. In addition groups will receive online feedback and mentoring via the Social Business Model Panorama on Babele.

Please also note that 3-week summer university courses require the completion of a pre-assignment during the month of June. So please make sure to plan in time for this task during the 4 weeks before the course starts.
Student workload
Class preparation (readings etc) 82 hours
Video interviews with social entrepreneurs (available online for asynchronous viewing) 16 hours
Group work 30 hours
Lectures 30 hours
Examination (take-home exam) 48 hours
Further Information

3 weeks course that cannot be combined with any other course.


This is an Aurorarized course initiated by Aurora (see cbs.dk/aurora for more information).


Preliminary Assignment: The course coordinator uploads Preliminary Assignment on Canvas at the end of May. It is expected that students participate as it will be included in the final exam, but the assignment is without independent assessment and grading.




Expected literature
  • Dees JG. 1998. Enterprising Nonprofits. Harvard Business Review. 76(1): 54-66.  Kannampuzha, Merie, and Kai Hockerts. 2019. "Organizational social   entrepreneurship: scale development and validation.” Vol 15(3): 290-319.    
  • Hockerts K. 2015.”How Hybrid Organizations Turn Antagonistic Assets into Comple­mentarities,” California Management Review, 57(3): 83-106, 2015.  
  • Skloot, Edward. "Should not-for-profits go into business?." Harvard business review 61.1 (1983): 20-26.
  • Guan, S., Tian, S., & Deng, G. (2021). Revenue diversification or revenue concentration? Impact on financial health of social enterprises. Public Management Review, 23(5), 754-774.
  • Lüdeke‐Freund, F. (2020). Sustainable entrepreneurship, innovation, and business models: Integrative framework and propositions for future research. Business Strategy and the Environment, 29(2), 665-681.
  • Gur, Furkan Amil, and Thomas Greckhamer. "Know thy enemy: A review and agenda for research on competitor identification." Journal of Management 45.5 (2019): 2072-2100.
  • Hockerts, Kai, and Rolf Wüstenhagen. "Greening Goliaths versus emerging Davids—Theorizing about the role of incumbents and new entrants in sustainable entrepreneurship." Journal of business venturing 25.5 (2010): 481-492.
  • Hueske, Anne-Karen, and Edeltraud Guenther. "Multilevel barrier and driver analysis to improve sustainability implementation strategies: Towards sustainable operations in institutions of higher education." Journal of Cleaner Production291 (2021): 125899.
  • Rawhouser, Hans, Cummings, Michael, Crane, Andrew, Benefit Corporation Legislation and the Emergence of a Social Hybrid Category. California Management Review, Spring2015, Vol. 57 Issue 3, p13-35.  
  • Emerson, J. 2003. The Blended Value Proposition: Integrating Social and Financial Returns. California Management Review, 45(4): 35-51.
  • Hockerts, Kai, Lisa Hehenberger, Stefan Schaltegger, and Vanina Farber. "Defining and Conceptualizing Impact Investing: Attractive Nuisance or Catalyst?." Journal of Business Ethics (2022): 1-14.
  • Moody, Michael, Laura Littlepage, and Naveed Paydar. "Measuring social return on investment: Lessons from organizational implementation of SROI in the Netherlands and the United States." Nonprofit Management and Leadership 26.1 (2015): 19-37.
  • Yates, Brian T., and Mita Marra. "Social Return On Investment (SROI): Problems, solutions… and is SROI a good investment?." Evaluation and program planning 64 (2017): 136-144.
Last updated on 22-11-2023