PBT began its journey by completing research initiatives in 2018, to shed some light on existing and potential Pacific Social enterprises. Firstly, the joint Pacific Economy research work with the Treasury and secondly The Social Enterprise Research: A study of current literature and practice. PBT wanted to explore their status in theoretical and practical debates regarding the sector and how PBT might carve out a niche for itself, within the emerging mainstream social enterprise ecosystem in New Zealand.
PACIFIC ECONOMY RESEARCH PDF
SOCIAL ENTERPRISE RESEARCH: A STUDY OF CURRENT LITERATURE AND PRACTICE
KEY INSIGHTS FROM RESEARCH
What is clear from both of these research initiatives was that Pacific people invest hugely into community efforts as can be seen by the significant amount of voluntary hours per capita and the large number of enterprises with a ‘social outcome’ focus. The Social Enterprise Research contained the following key points for discussion:
Voice – there is a lack of Pacific Voice and identity in the shaping of New Zealand social enterprise landscape. Pacific perspective is largely absent in the mainstream dialogue that is now shaping the social, legal, financial and policy frameworks and agendas that will determine the sectors future.
Opportunities and Challenges – there is a need to hear the Pacific understanding of what challenges face the emergence and growth of social enterprise among Pacific communities, and how to turn those challenges into opportunities.
Representation – this study asks whether the mainstream dialogue, the emergent sector and corresponding ecosystem fully represent and serve the interests and needs of Pacific organisations to be financially sustainable to deliver sustainable development for the communities they serve.
Value – there is a need to bring Pacific social enterprise to the attention of the mainstream, highlighting their valued contribution, values and ways of working to support Pacific and wider New Zealand’s social and economic and environmental outcomes.
Leadership – the challenge lies in carving a common Pacific social enterprise identity with visibility so that models of investment and support are relevant and build on Pacific strengths and assets. This is a key leadership and coordinative role that PBT can play as a logical extension of its service to Pacific community development.