The Pioneers Post top 15 stories of 2017

We're delighted to report that Pioneers Post readers like a good news story. By far the most popular piece on the Pioneers Post website during 2017 was our account of the launch of our very own WISE100 Index in October. Created in partnership with the NatWest SE100 Index, this is the first ever index to recognise the most inspiring and influential women in social enterprise, impact investment and social innovation. These 100 women impressed our selection panel with their achievements – and they'll be ones to watch during 2018.

Another subject that interests lots of you is impact measurement. We worked with Buzzacott earlier this year to publish new research and create a snappy little film to help you carry out social impact measurement more effectively – we're really pleased that you liked it. We'll return to this topic next year as we anticipate that it will become ever more important for social enterprises aiming to stay at the top of their game.

We work hard to bring you a wide range of stories from different perspectives and we hope that you all remain loyal readers in 2018. It's easy to stay up to date with our coverage, simply sign up to our Friday newsletter here and you can subscribe for access to our extensive archive and to receive our printed magazines here.

Here's a look at our most engaging stories from 2017.

News and views

  1. Top social enterprise women celebrated at WISE100 launch

A new initiative from Pioneers Post and the NatWest SE100 Index saw 100 leading women in the social enterprise world celebrated in October.

  1. social enterprise coffee shopWholly sustainable social enterprises are a myth

Alastair Wilson of the School for Social Entrepreneurs provoked reaction with his argument that most social enterprises just aren’t set up for major commercial success.

  1. Social enterprises in Africa rise to new challenges

As the Enterprise Summit began in Accra, Ghana, in March, we looked at a trio of inspiring social entrepreneurs in Africa.

  1. Time to change Theories of Change?

Ooh, ‘theories of change’ is an esoteric topic, but you loved it! Social impact guru Jeremy Nicholls said a theory of change is the must-have accessory for any self-respecting social or environmental purpose organisation.

  1. Achieving gender equality through social enterprise

Gender equality has been a hot topic this year for Pioneers Post. The British Council published a comprehensive overview of the role of social enterprises across the world in women’s empowerment.


Business School

  1. New Year's Resolutions_Liam BlackNew year’s resolutions for social entrepreneurs

Leadership expert Liam Black offers some pointers for resolutions for 2017. Did you achieve them?

  1. Impact measurement: fake news or essential to business?

This Pioneers Post special report, published with Buzzacott with the support of The Good Economy Partnership and Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, examines the latest attitudes towards impact measurement among social enterprises.

  1. Ten things to know when starting a social enterprise

Mark Parsons, head of community finance and social enterprise at NatWest, gives his list of the first steps that social entrepreneurs need to take.

  1. How hard are you prepared to work to make a difference?

Ever wondered what it’s like to lead a social enterprise that scales up when it gets investment? It could be tough.

  1. Make time for real learning and development

Attract the best talent to your social enterprise by emphasising how much you prioritise opportunities for your employees to learn.


Videos and podcasts

  1. Seven lessons for social impact measurement

Our fantastic film about how you can carry out social impact measurement more effectively.

  1. Change PleaseSE100 Trailblazing Newcomer: Change Please

Coffee with SE100 award-winner Change Please.

  1. The 2016 Social Enterprise World Forum: a look back

Our review of the best bits of the 2016 Social Enterprise World Forum in Hong Kong.

  1. SEWF returns to Scotland for its tenth anniversary

The Social Enterprise World Forum returns to Edinburgh in 2018. Enjoy the beautiful landscapes featured in this little film looking forward to its homecoming.

  1. SE100 Impact Champion: Manor House Development Trust

Manor House Development Trust in London is brilliant at measuring its impact. Find out more in our film.