British Council’s Grant Scheme for Capacity Building on Social Enterprise in Higher Educational Institutions- Ethiopia

Deadline: 31 May 2019

The British Council is pleased to announce its grant scheme for Capacity Building on Social Enterprise in Higher Educational Institutions.

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The overall objective of this project is: People have the skills to be employable and to build inclusive economies which support stable and prosperous societies. The specific objective of the action is to build an enabling ecosystem of support that encourages the growth of social enterprises, as an integral part of the economy in Ethiopia.

This is a partnership programme that supports collaboration between academic institutions in Ethiopia and the UK universities by providing grant for HEI project activities. The primary purpose is to build social enterprise understanding in Education systems and to strengthen policy and practice of embedding social enterprise in the curricula of higher education institutions in Ethiopia.

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Universities will be supported to embed social enterprise teaching into existing programmes and where possible to establish specific social enterprise education programmes, which will include university partnerships and adding social enterprise training to existing curriculums as well as standalone courses through a competitive grant arrangement.

The grant scheme for Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) fall under Result 2 which envisages Higher Education Institutions in Ethiopia to be identified and supported to offer social entrepreneurship courses or embed social enterprise into curriculum delivery, allow students with experiential learning opportunities & employability, provide access to facilities such as incubation space, and develop enterprise solution arising from academic research by drawing on the expertise from Higher Education Institutions from the UK.

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This builds on the Support for Social Enterprise in Eastern Africa pilot project, a total grant of 120,000 EUR were disbursed to Higher Education Institutions (and TVETs) in Ethiopia and Kenya and partnership between institutions from the EU, Kenya and Ethiopia are established.


Ethiopian Social Enterprise Programme works on three components:

  • Government engagement and policy – They work with policy makers and policy influencers to create an evidence based enabling environment in which social enterprises can thrive.
  • Capacity Building (Business and Investor Readiness for social entrepreneurs) – They support social enterprises to develop, grow and scale through training, mentoring and consultancy as well as access to funding and investment.
  • Collaboration and partnership – They facilitate space for social enterprises to link into existing platforms and networks to facilitate knowledge sharing, partnerships and matchmaking between businesses and other actors.


The intervention is expected to fall under either of the below categories:

  • Mainstreaming Social Enterprise across disciplines – collaboration that explores how social enterprise can be mainstreamed across the university, regardless of what course is studied.
  • Curriculum development and joint courses –collaboration focused on embedding social enterprise curriculum in to existing courses or developing new ones. Development of new shared academic resources such as accredited modules, online material, and twin campus courses etc. with active support from the UK partner.
  • Incubation – Collaboration focused on strengthening incubation centres/labs within Universities. Preference will be given to collaborations that attract new partners including industry and corporates to contribute to incubation and seed funding.
  • Social Enterprise projects with the local community – collaboration focussed on interacting closely with the local communities to create an innovative solution to the pressing local issues.

Duration & Funding

The overall available grant is ETB 1,500,000.00.

The grant for individual Higher Education Institutions may range between ETB 500,000 to ETB 1,000,000.00 (based on an assessment of the scale of the intervention and potential partner absorptive capacity). Partners are advised to apply for a grant amount that matches with their size and capability, taking into consideration that implementation should be completed within12 months (until September 2020).

British Council envisages that it will contract all grants directly to the higher education institution based in-country who will manage the grant intervention. The collaborative partnership with a higher education institution from the UK should be clearly stated with a terms of reference or memorandum of understanding.

Funding Criteria

Project funds will only cover:

  • Cost to develop course content
  • Cost to organise essential supporting events like seminar, conference or workshops with limited access to procure consumables for the delivery of events. (e.g.: procuring training materials for faculty development)
  • Visa fee, airport transfers, economy class return air fare, local travel, accommodation, local subsistence costs per visit up to 5 days period. (Any additional expenses related to travel should be the responsibility of the institutions)
  • Website development if essential for the project
  • Appropriate fieldwork, research /data collection cost in country
  • Preparing project reports, preferably for online dissemination – CD Rom, e-publications, online file sharing, blog, mobile apps or podcast.
  • Professional fee aside from regular working hours both for the staff here in Ethiopia and from the UK.

Eligibility Criteria

Recognised Universities, Business Schools and Higher Education institutions in Ethiopia with an existing initiative or programme on either social entrepreneurship on mainstream entrepreneurship are eligible to apply for these partnerships.

How to Apply

Application must be submitted via email or in person (signed and sealed) at the British Council Ethiopia office or by courier to the British Council.

For more information, please visit

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