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MakeSense

Nominee details

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Introducing MakeSense

The mission of Makesense is to create a community who will accelerate the impact of social entrepreneur projects.
Makesense is an open and collaborative project. Since its launch in January 2011, it has constantly evolved thanks to its members, who are located all around the world, and thus taking the movement forward by promoting social entrepreneurship and solving concrete challenge of social entrepreneurs. The global community counts 950 active members, more than 15,000 people and the organisation of 700 events in more than 100 cities.

The UK hosts some of the most active Makesense communities. It started in London in 2011 and has 50 active members and 250 in the pool. Now close to 10 cities have started to grow local communities of sensemakers. It has helped social entrepreneurs and involved more than 1000 participants through 60 challenge-solving events and 2 sensecamps.
In 2014, some sensemakers launched the first MKS Room (a cultural event to raise awareness on social entrepreneurship) about disabled people with deaf DJs and there will be the third sensecamp in June 28th.

Makesense connects social entrepreneurs with individuals through online (the web application and the blog) and offline tools (brainstorming workshops called hold-ups and solving-challenge manuals, informal meetings called sensedrinks, barcamp dedicated to social business called sensecamp).

Why should MakeSense be recognised for a "Lived it" Award?

Makesense creates value at many different levels and benefits for social entrepreneurs as well as active members & participants to MS events :
1. It enables social entrepreneurs to find existing good resouces thank to its community of sensemakers.
2 It creates opportunities of multidisciplinary brainstormings (thank to the diversity of members profiles) and allows the development of innovative and sustainable solutions to solve better people challenges
3. It allows entrepreneurs to prototype their business model, their communication plan, their products or services.
4. It helps social entrepreneurs to realise and test the commercial potential of their products / services on a specific market or on a global level.
5. It represents a huge communication channel to promote social entrepreneurs projects using its social media, its factory and its regular events.
6. It facilitates the access and the spread of tools and methodologies to solve concrete business, design and technology challenges of social entrepreneurs
7. It mobilises all type of people and especially young people as catalyst of solutions to concrete social problems

In UK, the brand is trusted among many circles and the group has worked in partnership with some of the biggest local players, especially UnLtd.
The potential of the movement for further social impact has never been greater and the group has ambitious plans to make it grow in a sustainable way.

Some evidence in support of this nomination

The community set up a methodology to be able to measure its impacts for the social entrepreneurs and the members.

Assessment of brainstorming sessions for social entrepreneurs
Survey of March 2013 / sample of 74 entrepreneurs.
- 91% of the respondent said “the hold-up helped to solve my challenge”
- 76% “I collected new ideas”
- 49% “one of the ideas was implemented
- 68% “the hold-up confirmed ideas I had
- 74% “ the hold-up helped me to get useful contacts”
- 75% “the hold-up provided additional visibility to my project”

Assessment of the impact of active members
Survey of April 2013 / sample of 153 makesense members
- 56 out of the 153 are students, 70 are working on their own venture project, others are young professionals either working in an organization or looking for a job
- 56% have attended to few hold-ups, 61% have animated at least one, 71% have attended to a training
- The 3 skills members have leant or developed are : brainstorming facilitation, community management, collaboration and team work.
- 95% have learnt more about social entrepreneurship after joining the community, more precisely information and contacts.
- 85% of those working on their own venture project said “My makesense experience has impacted my venture project” mainly with new ideas and motivation.
- 83% of the 153 members said “the main thing I get out of Makesense that I would not have had otherwise is : connections with people sharing the same vision”.

Testimonials of social entrepreneurs :

“Friday was an almighty help an inspiration boost. It was great to see the reaction to the DoNation from so many sharp minds. Some fantastic ideas came out of it, and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do with them”
Hermione Taylor, the DoNation, Hold-up with On Purpose Associates, London

“The team have all reviewed it now – I think there are definitely some good ideas here that we will look at pursuing – in particular I think some areas such as making links to political interest groups to enable them to understand the power of the resource that is available.”
Paul Lenz, theyworkforyou, London