18 Feb How does technology contribute to a social enterprise in the context of sport?
Sport is one of the important social phenomena that people from different segments of society are particularly interested in. Many people are the part of the sport either as a follower, a practitioner or a professional.
Along with the innovative aspect of the sport industry, sport entrepreneurship is an important economic concept in Europe as well as in the world, and it is becoming an increasingly common career option, especially among young people.
Technological enterprises include those with innovative, high value-added and technological business ideas. Technological enterprises are distinguished by their high and fast growth potential and their capacity to open and scale up to the global market.
Think about the companies like AirBNB, Uber and Facebook. The common characteristics of these enterprises are that they have grown very fast and have reached millions of users / customers around the world thanks to technology as well as innovative business models.
On the other hand, technology plays a prominent role as not only is technology inherently innovative but increasingly, it has become cost effective to deploy technology to solve social problems.
So how does using technology contribute to a social enterprise? The answer to this question will of course be to increase the effect you want to create. So how can a social entrepreneur use technology to increase impact? Now let’s take a look at this.
Unlike a traditional entrepreneur, a social entrepreneur can solve a problem by using the latest technology and innovative thinking.
Technology democratizes social entrepreneurs’ access to knowledge, provides them new skills and helps them scale their businesses. Of course, this doesn’t mean that every tech venture will be successful.
Technology is a powerful tool that, when used appropriately, can increase the scale and impact of social enterprises. In addition, technology can cause significant societal changes when presented by social entrepreneurs in a way that empowers the target audience with appropriate education. Let’s take a look at some examples now.
Adim Adim (Step by Step) is a social enterprise that aims to promote ”collective charity run” in Turkey. It includes more than 83 thousand volunteer runners and more than 690 thousand donors. The “Run for Goodness” Platform launched by Adim Adim is a “charity run” web platform used by volunteers who want to run for donations to non-governmental organizations. Volunteer runners can see their rankings, the number of donors, and their badges on the web pages based on gamification. The Run for Goodness platform is the first digital fundraising platform in the world built exclusively for charity run.
Let’s talk about mobile technologies, one of the technologies that have caused the most striking changes in recent years. The United Nations recognized that the mobile revolution empowered the poor more than any other technology. Today, a person has a much greater opportunity to have a mobile phone than to have access to toilets and sanitation. ‘Play with Me’ is a mobile application in Norway specifically aimed at encouraging refugees’ interactions with the host community and supporting their social inclusion through sports. Thanks to this mobile application, refugees can easily access the sports facilities nearest to them and find all the information they need about the facility. The mobile application also enables refugees and host communities to organize sports activities together, contributing to the increase and widening of the social impact that will occur.
Let’s finally take a look at the digital design and social media tools that many of us use today. Let’s say you started an initiative, and you organize a promotion campaign. Before digital tools like social media, maybe you would have to communicate with hundreds of people for this. Now, thanks to design tools with very simple interfaces, we can customize ready-made templates and send them to hundreds of people via social media tools. If an elite athlete shared such a post on his or her social media account, it means that the post is accessible to anyone, anywhere in the world, at any time. This is a good example of how technology can provide engagement and interaction in a social enterprise initiated by an athlete who is loved and followed by society.
Undoubtedly, technology is constantly changing and innovating. Social entrepreneurs should follow new technological trends, keep the “technology for good” motto in mind and sweat over to make life better by making use of technology.
Håkon Ege /Collective Innovation.