We are developing the Social Lean Canvas as a tool to help social entrepreneurs apply the rigours of Lean Startup to ventures that have social or environmental goals that exist independent of their profit motive.

Working with numerous Social Enterprises over the years, we’ve found a huge opportunity to innovate new business models that social entrepreneurs are largely missing out on. Our experience has shown that the ability to apply Lean Startup to social enterprises—to develop coherent business models in a quick and simple way and then to methodically test them in order to arrive at a throughly validated, scalable, repeatable business model—is largely missing from the Social Entrepreneur’s tool kit.

The Social Lean Canvas attempts to make this possible.  It is an adaptation of Ash Maurya’s Lean Canvas (leancanvas.com) which he in turn adapted from Alexander Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas (businessmodelgeneration.com) (and is likewise licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Un-ported License). Both of these tools are extremely useful for helping companies understand and innovate their business models. However, we found that they miss some key components that are required to help make a social enterprise business model make sense.

The Social Lean Canvas augments these tools for the Lean Startup Social Enterprise

Since embarking on this project, we have been overwhelmed by the interest that we have seen from Entrepreneurs and Social Enterprises. We are confident that with input from both the Lean Startup and Social Enterprise communities, we will be able to create something that is genuinely useful.

Social Lean Canvas has been created by Rowan Yeoman & Dave Moskovitz in conjunction with the Akina Foundation


Rowan YeomanRowan Yeoman


Dave mos cropped

 Dave Moskovitz


Screen Shot 2014-06-09 at 6.45.56 amAkina Foundation