Halcyon Incubator Releases 2nd Annual Ranking of Best Cities for Social Entrepreneurs

Halcyon Incubator Releases 2nd Annual Ranking of Best Cities for Social Entrepreneurs

August 16, 2017 | Halcyon

The Social Enterprise Ecosystems Report measures social enterprise in twenty-one top U.S. cities based on funding, human capital, quality of life, and regulation

WASHINGTON, Aug. 16, 2017 -- Halcyon Incubator, a program of non profit Halcyon, partnered with Capital One, the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, and Deloitte to produce the 2nd Annual Social Enterprise Ecosystems Report (SEER). The report serves as an essential resource for the cultivation of a better understanding of the social enterprise ecosystem to forge, grow and sustain a world where social entrepreneurs can work together to solve society's toughest problems.

The second annual report measures social enterprise ecosystems in the United States based on public data as well as survey responses from 416 active social entrepreneurs across the country. All questions in the survey were derived from a set of variables tailored specifically to social entrepreneurs and based on four pillars. These pillars include: Funding, the fuel of the ecosystem sourcing capital; Human Capital, the engine of great people for teams and mentors; Quality of Life, the fabric that includes diversity, cost of living and transportation; and Regulation, the operational environment of regulations and attitudes toward social enterprise.

Amongst the rankings and pillars, here are some of the overall key findings of the 2017 SEER:

  • Boston (#1), San Francisco (#2) and Washington, D.C. (#3) lead the country in social enterprise ecosystems
  • Men reported significantly higher amounts of capital raised than women – More than double
  • Of the four pillars, social entrepreneurs found Human Capital to be the most important
  • Men find their relationship with investors to be the key to success where women consider mentors and advisors the key
  • The plurality of respondents agreed that it was difficult to support themselves due to a high cost of living

"These social entrepreneurs are solving the world's biggest problems and what is truly incredible is how responsive these cities have been. As a result, twenty-one cities are on the map, twelve more than last year," said Ryan Ross, program director at Halcyon Incubator. "The increase in social enterprise activity we've seen reflects that this is no longer a niche industry, but a transformative model for innovation in the 21st century."

The report breaks major ground in the social enterprise field, according to Elana Fine, the Executive Director of the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship at University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business. "The SEER report opens up a new dialogue on how cities and regions can best attract and develop social entrepreneurs."

In collaboration with Deloitte, the SEER team developed key case studies called SPARKS, to highlight leading practices for improving ecosystems and to inspire change among social entrepreneurs. The SPARKS resulted from in-depth interviews of business professionals, policymakers, enablers, entrepreneurs, funders and investors. The SPARKS accompany each pillar with key takeaways, case studies and specific recommendations for each city to capitalize on. You can find the full list of Sparks here.

For more findings on each city and to see how each city ranked within the four pillars: http://socentcity.org

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About Halcyon Incubator: Halcyon Incubator, a program of Halcyon, is committed to solving 21st century challenges throughout the nation and the world by helping social entrepreneurs transform audacious ideas into scalable and sustainable ventures. Learn more at www.halcyonincubator.org.

To learn more about Halcyon and the full list of programs and critical initiatives and work surrounding Halcyon, please visit halcyonhouse.org.