Next steps on the road to reignite Adult Education in New Zealand.
Anthony Cabraal

How Social Entrepreneurs Feed the Inequality Spiral

I’m glad you named the National government cuts that launched Chalkle.

This is straight out of the neoliberal textbook:

  1. Government drastically cuts social sector funding while celebrating that they’ve “balanced the books”.
  2. Local social entrepreneurs (aka “volunteers”) see an opportunity to fill the gaps.
  3. They run R&D for a few years, discover there is no profitable business model for delivering the social service, and burn out or otherwise close shop.
  4. A hugely capitalised transnational corporation with nepotistic access to decision-makers rolls out a standardised solution that is marginally successful in terms of bums-on-seats, but massively lacking in quality and social impact.
  5. Rich guys get richer.

And that’s why our street lights and prisons are run by the biggest company you’ve never heard of:

I think it is urgently important for “social entrepreneurs” to grapple with this reality. If the problem started with a political decision, why are we trying to solve it in the marketplace?