For years, social entrepreneurs have been rethinking the way we address the world’s most entrenched social problems, such as poverty, the achievement gap, barriers to health care, and the absence of rule of law. Their successes have captured the attention of activists and policy-makers worldwide, and the movement is now well positioned to significantly realign the entire social sector.
By helping inform new laws and regulatory schemes related to non-profit organizations and their management, and providing specialized, strategic advice on how to best implement these innovative, entrepreneurial solutions, lawyers can play a critical role in effecting systemic change. Social entrepreneurs stand to profit greatly from the powerful tools lawyers can provide them.
"The nascent field of law and social entrepreneurship is critical to the future of innovation for public benefit. Too often social entrepreneurs find that their fresh ideas for social impact are limited by statutory inflexibility and unimaginative counsel. Instead of allowing ingenuity and promise to die on the vine, the legal profession must also imagine and innovate new ways to nourish and harvest the fruits of social entrepreneurship."
Ben Cokelet, Founder and Executive Director, Project on Organizing, Development, Education, and Research (PODER)