There are huge opportunities for universities to make immensely valuable contributions to the social impact sector. Universities are a powerful tool for grooming the next generation of social scientists, policymakers, business leaders, civil servants, and professionals. And every social enterprise needs an army of well-educated employees—marketing directors, accountants, and others—who have earned a university degree.
But the learning of social entrepreneurs is a different matter. I believe these individuals learn most effectively outside the walls of universities, in practical ways that are not traditionally academic. And for social change to happen on a wide scale, we need to welcome people from all backgrounds to become social entrepreneurs—something universities, in their current form, simply can’t do.
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