Social enterprises make significant contributions to our society and national economy, touching the lives of individuals, families and communities across Australia. Their numbers and impacts have grown substantially in recent times, working across industrial sectors and increasingly with government departments in new areas, such as social procurement.

The purpose of this resource is to distil the key lessons and advice for practice arising from the social enterprise research.

Our research shows that a vibrant ecosystem is critical to establishing and sustaining social enterprises in Australia. We have drawn from the Social Enterprise Resilience project, as well as other key studies of the social enterprise ecosystem in Australia, to provide recommendations for three key audiences:

Each set of recommendations is structured to provide a description of the key learnings, the evidence that supports it, and recommendations for policy and practice.

We also provide a summary of the lessons learned from developing SERT, which we hope supports complementary efforts to develop secure and useful digital tools for the social enterprise community.