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Successful Social Enterprise in a UK University: The case of the University of Northampton
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Successful Social Enterprise in a UK University: The case of the University of Northampton

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  • 1. Wray Irwin Deputy Director of Social Innovation and Enterprise The University of Northampton Successful Social Enterprise in a UK University: The Case of the University of Northampton
  • 2. Northampton in the UK c 70 miles North of London c 270,000 population Mixed economy, traditional industries replaced by light manufacturing, high-tech. engineering, service sector
  • 3. What are we famous for Some facts about Northampton •Between 11th and 13th Centuries it was capital of England •Loosing side in the civil war •Rebelled against 5 English monarchs •3rd oldest university in UK (but see point above) •Shoes, rubbish and the lift tower
  • 4. Yes a lift tower
  • 5. Yes a lift tower
  • 6. The University of Northampton Some facts and figures •c 14,600 students in 2012 •70% full time •60% female, 40% male •55% over 21 •90% undergraduate, 10% postgraduate •83% UK students, 17% international
  • 7. The University of Northampton • Arts • Education • Health • Northampton Business School • Science and Technology • Social Sciences Six Schools and Two Campuses
  • 8. The University of Northampton • Position 102 out of 129 UK universities • Graduate employment 90% • World renown leather centre • World renown waste management centre State of the Nation 2009
  • 9. The University of Northampton • Raising the Bar • 3 clear objectives • Top 50 university by 2015 • Top 10 for student experience • # 1 UK University for Social Enterprise New Vice Chancellor
  • 10. Social enterprise and UK universities • Social enterprise increasingly important • A ‘new model’ flexible, dynamic and cost effective model for service delivery and transformation • Social enterprise supported by all mainstream political parties • UK universities good at following developments! • Social enterprise moving from a niche specialism to more mainstream education • New research, learning material, degree programmes , student societies, external speakers etc • Very small government funding to support social enterprise via HEFCE – UnLtd engagement • But there was lots of ‘guerrilla’ activity happening at grass roots The national picture
  • 11. Social enterprise in UK universities • Over 115 UK universities have ‘social enterprise’ information on their websites • Said Business School, Oxford, Skoll Centre for social enterprise (1-2 academics) • Judge Business School, Cambridge (1-2 academics) • Middlesex University research centre (c 10 academics and researchers) • Lots of small ‘pockets’ of activity, normally located in one Faculty or Department • Student Hubs http://oxfordhub.org/xwiki/bin/view/Oxford+Hub/ and others • Increasing numbers of Masters programmes and undergraduate modules • A developing area • Northampton the only university to have a whole institution integrated focus on social enterprise Examples of activity
  • 12. University of Northampton Management • 2010 new Vice Chancellor, new ambition, new mission • ‘Raising the Bar’ strategy – publicly committed Northampton to be #1 UK HEI for social enterprise by 2015 • Change management tactic – tell the world you are going to do it, then you have to do it! • Visible and consistent leadership from the Vice Chancellor and Chief Operating Officer • Proven project manager with strong ‘enterprise’ record • Social enterprise in Northampton funded by Higher Education Innovation Fund allocation (£1.2m p.a. = c $1.8m) • Define core values for social enterprise strategy • Define key strategic activities • Be hyper-active and communicate all the time! What we did to be #1 UK social enterprise university
  • 13. Social Enterprise • Provide a unique student experience of the very highest quality, developing both theoretical and practical competence in social enterprise • Encourage, support and develop entrepreneurial skills and enterprising attitudes in students, staff and communities we work with • Strive to deliver a fairer and more inclusive society Underpinning values
  • 14. It’s more than modules • You don’t have to do a social enterprise degree to be socially enterprising • Attitudes, values and behaviour more important than specific qualifications • Can be a socially entrepreneurial artist, scientist, lawyer, accountant, dentist, teacher etc • Philosophy underpinning learning and research is vital • Extra-curricular opportunities very important – Enterprise Club crucial to Northampton • Promotion of a socially enterprising university should be different Socially enterprising university models
  • 15. Yes a lift tower
  • 16. Mission Accomplished: UK #1 HEI by 2013 • 47th in University league table • 97% of graduates in graduate employment • #1 for Social Enterprise, Ashoka U designation. • Supported over 3,200 social enterprise clients • Generated over £1M new income • Helped over 50 students/graduates set up new social enterprises • Influenced social enterprise policy and practice • Provided over 300s placement/internship opportunities • New research • New learning opportunities What have we done?
  • 17. The future • Build on Change-maker Campus network • New educational offer: new students, new staff • Social Innovation on every corner • Move to new ‘leadership model’ to drive innovation • Embed social impact/value in all activities • New University, new site, based on Change-maker principles 2013 - 2018
  • 18. Where are we now? The Cube St Johns Park Campus Avenue Campus Waterside +
  • 19. What are our plans?
  • 20. Thank you for listening

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