International Journal of Community and Cooperative Studies (IJCCS)

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Emergence of Cooperatives and the Future of the Social Enterprises Sector in Botswana


The concept of integrating social aims with profit-making is an emerging trend in the world today, especially in the wake of the 2007-2009 financial crisis which shone the spotlight on the problems of pure profit maximisation. Social enterprise is at the very core of this new movement to integrate social aims with profits, taking root in an increasing number of circles. The Botswana situation is marked by social enterprise being almost non-existent as a concept in the general consciousness. In spite of this conceptual absence, it can be argued that the main ingredients of social enterprises have played a substantial role in the historic formation of the Botswana welfare state in the form of cooperatives. In the first period the workers’ and farmers’ cooperative movements were the most influential actors concerning improvement of livelihoods. As such, this paper will seek to understand the emergence of social enterprises globally and how Botswana as a country can increasingly apply the tool of social entrepreneurship to address a plethora of differing social issues, such as extreme poverty and unemployment, in ameliorating and improving the condition of the people.

Keywords: Botswana, Cooperatives, Poverty Alleviation, Social Enterprise

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