septiembre 18, 2023

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Revealing report provides shocking data on social entrepreneurship in Colombia.

Social Entrepreneurs qualify support from the national government as very low. They demand public policies and the regulation of Law 2234 of 2022 or Social Entrepreneurship Law.

This business model stimulates the economy and generates job opportunities; on average, social enterprises generate 10 jobs.




RECON, the leading social entrepreneurship organization in Colombia, in collaboration with Sweden, has launched the Radiography of the State of Social Entrepreneurship in Colombia, the most comprehensive report to date on how this business model is developing in the country. The diagnosis, which involved more than 1,000 social entrepreneurs in various regions and municipalities of Colombia, reveals surprising data and provides a comprehensive view of this growing sector.

10 Key facts to understand social entrepreneurship in Colombia

The report presents results on social entrepreneurship in various topics such as: the profile of the social entrepreneur, formalization and size of the ventures, viability and benefits, limitations and obstacles, support and resources, relationship with the national government, measurement of social impact, access to financing and resources, contribution to social challenges, among others. The following are 10 key points from the report that allow us to understand how this business model is developing in the country.


  • 73.21% of social enterprises in Colombia are formalized: 36.25% as SAS and 20.48% as Foundations.
  • They stimulate the economy and generate employment. 66.66% are microenterprises, employing 1 to 5 people. On average, each social enterprise employs 10 people.
  • 14.76% of the social entrepreneurs are victims of the armed conflict.
  • 64.63% consider that the lack of financial resources, lack of government support and access to education limit the development of social enterprises in Colombia.
  • 65.09% have never received support resources.
  • 78.18% of social enterprises consider that more support from end consumers is needed.
  • 63.14% consider the relationship with the National Government as «Regular» and 20.15% as «Bad», reflecting dissatisfaction with the level of support and the policies implemented.
  • 57.29% of the entrepreneurs do not dare to apply for financial credit because of the obstacles. Only 19.12% have been able to access credit and 23.58% have been denied.
  • 78.92% of the social enterprises in Colombia measure their social impact.
  • 69.55% obtain their income from the sale of products and/or services. Only 10.03% obtain their income from donations.


The report also highlights the challenges faced by social entrepreneurs and the need to strengthen government support. Collaboration between the government and social entrepreneurs is fundamental to promote effective public policies that support this growing sector.

Andrés Santamaría, director of RECON, said: «The radiography of the State of Social Entrepreneurship in Colombia allows us to understand the reality of this sector and encourages us to work hard to strengthen it. With this third edition, we seek to promote the regulation of the Social Entrepreneurship Law and define a solid public policy that supports social entrepreneurs throughout the country».



Lack of support from the National Government for Social Entrepreneurship

The current National Government faces a worrying relationship with social entrepreneurship in Colombia, according to the radiography, 63.14% of respondents consider it «Regular» and 20.15% qualify it as «Bad», showing dissatisfaction with the level of support and policies implemented. The need to improve this relationship is evident, demanding that the government address the concerns expressed by civil society and take concrete measures to strengthen its commitment to the sector. The lack of public policies, support and incentives for the development of social enterprises in the country stands out. The regulation of the Social Entrepreneurship Law and a comprehensive public policy are fundamental to support the growth and positive impact of this business model in Colombia, generating significant economic and social benefits.

«It is important that the National Government differentiates social entrepreneurship within the Popular Economy, through the implementation of public policies and specific support programs. This will allow recognizing its positive social and environmental impact, providing resources, training and growth opportunities for social entrepreneurs. In doing so, it will promote the sustainable development of the popular economy and contribute to the reduction of poverty and unemployment in Colombia,» added Andrés Santamaría.


This report is a call to action for all actors involved in the social entrepreneurial ecosystem in Colombia. Together, we can generate significant change and build a more inclusive and sustainable future.


Download the Social Entrepreneurship Radiography – RECON 2023