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Entrepreneurship development through practice” is the guiding principle with which Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) launched an innovative Masters Programme on ‘Social Entrepreneurship’ at the Center for Social Entrepreneurship, in the year 2007. Under this Programme, students identify a social problem through a process and identify innovative ways through which it could be addressed. They are encouraged to work in collaboration with government, industry, society, and communities. The curriculum blends cutting edge theory with field-based experiential learning, and by interlinking the class teaching, fieldwork and project execution to develop appropriate, efficient, effective and socio-economically sustainable entrepreneurial initiatives. The graduates, immediately after completion of the academic programme, launch social ventures in various parts of the country. The Programme aims at addressing micro-level social problems such as education, livelihood, health care, energy, water management, the environment through venture creation, and at a macro level by means of advocacy and policymaking.The Incubation Center at the Center for Social Entrepreneurship at TISS is the first of its kind in India in an academic institution, to support social entrepreneurship and is an in-built adaptation of the Masters' Programme where the students, immediately after graduation, get guidance, mentoring, physical space and network for funding and value-based collaboration.
Incubation Center promotes social start-ups by guiding them right from the stage when social problems are articulated and the possible solutions are proposed, to ensure that these ventures create impactful and sustainable solutions at an appropriate scale. The process also provides opportunities for experimentation and exploration of newer solutions and methods. The Incubation programme invites applications from innovators/entrepreneurs from across the country and offers support for a period of 18 months. They are encouraged and supported to become independent and self-supporting. In this way within this period, the Ventures establish the efficient venture model and gradually become competent and eligible for formal funding support from donors, philanthropists and impact investors. They also find network partners and the team members, to support growth in terms of impact and scale.
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