The British Council’s Global Social Enterprise programme, currently running in 29 countries and on four continents, draws on the UK experience in social enterprise to promote its growth around the world. We build capacity in the sector, forge international networks, and support policy leaders to create ecosystems in which social enterprise and social investment can thrive. Our work supports positive social change, inclusive growth and sustainable development while building trust and creating opportunities between the UK and other countries.

We have recently launched a three-year Social Enterprise Programme in Ethiopia, this builds on a pilot initiative we had implemented since 2015. 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.

Ethiopian Social Enterprise Programme works on three components: 

  1. Government engagement and policy - We work with policy makers and policy influencers to create an evidence based enabling environment in which social enterprises can thrive.
  2. Capacity Building (Business and Investor Readiness for social entrepreneurs) - We support social enterprises to develop, grow and scale through training, mentoring and consultancy as well as access to funding and investment.
  3. Collaboration and partnership - We 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 grant scheme for Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) falls under Result 2. It 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.   

British Council Ethiopia therefore invites interested applicants to submit an expression of interest for: Grant Scheme for Capacity Building on Social Enterprise in Higher Educational Institutions in accordance with the Request for Expression of Interest pack available below in the downloads section. 

List of Annexes forming part of the Expression of Interest (EoI)

  • Annex 1 List of suggested Higher Education
  • Annex 2 Template for expression of interest
  • Grant guideline


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

Instructions for application

  • Application must be submitted viaemail at or in person (signed and sealed) at the British Council Ethiopia office or by courier to the British Council (Office location: Comoros Street, Next to the British Embassy, PO Box 1043, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia).
  • Expression of Interest must be received by 17:00 EAT, on 31 May 2019. Expression of Interest submitted after the due time and date will not be accepted.
  • For any proposal related technical enquiries, please contact not later than 24 May 2019.