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University of Exeter Business School

Social Enterprise Management

Module titleSocial Enterprise Management
Module codeBEP2070
Academic year2023/4
Module staff


Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Module description

This module aims to give you the opportunity to explore how a Social Enterprise (SE) balances its environmental and social goals with financial sustainability, applying academic learning in a real-world context and introducing you to the world of business and Social Enterprise.


You will receive step by step guidance about how and why to form a Social Enterprise and using a variety of techniques you will gain a comprehensive understanding of business development for SE purposes. Invited guest speakers will share their insights and expertise of different SE aspects, challenges and considerations.

Module aims - intentions of the module

This module aims to enable you to understand the role, significance and importance of Social Enterprises in business today, and the principles on which such organisations function. Introductory sessions will provide definitions, frameworks and boundaries for Social Enterprises, and through collaborative and problem-based approaches you will explore the following key areas:

  • Setting up and structuring a Social Enterprise - including Financing, Resourcing and Marketing
  • Managing a Social Enterprise – including Leadership, Governance and Impact Measurement

Social Enterprises and Technology - including the role and impact of technology and innovation, and the use of social media

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. articulate the principles and values of Social Enterprise;
  • 2. review different business models and key requirements for a Social Enterprise;
  • 3. develop a Social Enterprise Business plan/project and critically evaluate the SE management process;

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 4. explain the concept of Social Enterprise and the principles by which a Social Enterprise operates;
  • 5. critically discuss issues of Environmental Sustainability and/or Social Responsibility in the context of Social Enterprise;
  • 6. summarise the financial, legal and governance structures for establishing Social Enterprise.

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 7. develop research skills through accessing different sources and the use of social media;
  • 8. demonstrate independent and group skills and identify the success factors for effective team work;
  • 9. manage a group project to a successful outcome, monitoring progress and reflecting on the process.

Syllabus plan


Indicative content:


  • Social Enterprise: what it is, how it works
  • Social Enterprise: structure and infrastructure
  • Principles and Social Value
  • Social and Environmental needs and solutions
  • Opportunities and challenges facing Social Enterprises
  • Sources of SE funding and business planning
  • Managing Social Enterprises
  • Social Enterprise impact and performance
  • Leadership and Governance
  • Social Innovation

Social Enterprises and Technology


Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching activity10Lectures
Scheduled Learning and Teaching activity15Tutorial, guest presentations and field trip
Guided Independent Study125 Asynchronous activities on ELE, preparation for in class activities, group work, plus research, analysis and writing/production of individual assignments.

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Social Enterprise business plan1-page proposal1-2, 4-5,7,9Oral feedback provided by tutor in tutorial session
Social media content1-minute overview 1-2, 4-8Oral feedback provided by tutor in tutorial session

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Essay302,000 words1-2, 4-5,7,9Written
Individual digital content40Social media content in form of a poster, presentation, video, podcast or blog 1-2, 4-8Written
Group business plan/project304000 words maximum1-3, 6-9Written

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Individual essay2000 word essay1-2, 4-5,7,9August
Individual digital contentA poster, presentation, video, podcast or blog1-2, 4-8August
Group business plan/projectIndividual SE business proposal1,3,6-8August

Re-assessment notes

A student will be referred in all failed components if the student fails the module with a mark of below 40% overall.

A student if deferred in a single component will be reassessed in that component only.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:


Doherty, B. Meehan, J. Maureen, R. Foster, G. Rotheroe, N. Mason, C. (2009) Management for Social Enterprise SAGE Publications Ltd


Nicholls, A. (2008) Social Entrepreneurship: New Models of Sustainable Social Change, Oxford University Press


 All students on the programme will have access to additional material via ELE

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Web-based and electronic resources:

Other resources: as provided and recommended during classes and via ELE

Key words search

Social Enterprise Management, Business Management, Business BSc

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites


Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date

Oct 2014

Last revision date