WHO IS RICHARD CATHERALL?
Richard Catherall is Executive Director of Cyprus-based Katarsis Ventures, which works primarily in transition states and post-conflict zones to help make social change happen by enabling big money to connect with big, undiscovered ideas. Catherall also has a U.K. focus, through Radical Capital, which aims to shape the UK social investment market.
Catherall says, “I am investing and actively involved in nurturing the conditions for innovation, supporting leadership through enterprise and encouraging investment in the social economy. The social economy is growing in the space between how the market provides, where the state intervenes and the increasing expectations and aspirations of people. In this space social entrepreneurs seek to solve problems, realize opportunities, shape and create markets through their products and services.”
You can connect with Richard here:
IN TOR 014 YOU’LL LEARN ABOUT:
- The origin of Katarsis, a social enterprise consultant and incubator with presence in Europe and Africa, looking to push forward innovative ideas in social enterprise.
- Richard’s vision for much needed cooperation among players in the development world, working on harmonizing a language, and incorporating more measures of profit and success.
- Dilemmas of young aspiring social entrepreneurs about making local impact versus maximizing it globally, or developing brand new systems instead of thinking about how to fit into existing ones.
OUR CONVERSATION INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING:
- Growth and strategy
- Conflict zones
- Market and business approaches
- Social impact
- North London, UK
EPISODE CRIB NOTES
“I did it so I could be independent.” Consulting for social enterprises.
Specialized in social enterprises, growth and strategy, and innovation for conflict zones.
Bridge small organizations with good ideas for sources of funding.
Based on the UK, focus on North Africa, Middle East.
All about business ideas that bring about change through markets and business approaches.
Read a lot about Africa. Got traction.
A contact and realizations of global implications. Building a road in Lebanon involves considering conflict effect on endurance.
Hidden infrastructure problems in the Middle East.
Idea is the spark. “We’re small fish.” Richard sees conflict of interest from large organizations like UNDP.
He wants to be involved in partnerships, but there is also competition.
Focus is a strategic program, gaining unique, valuable learning. “Create as much value as possible.“
Committed to networking well: listen, be open, help, not always through formal channels.
Richard is not afraid to offer himself when he believes there is meeting of the minds.
Conversations are highly valuable and can take long before projects.
“There is so much to do.” Millennials are an untapped development resource.
Game for the long term. In short, there should be a lot more collaboration.
Clients are sorted by stages relevant to their missionary focus.
Relationships evolve over time, organizations change, starting by size.
Novelties in the sector
There are different challenges.
Business language is here to stay, and it could hurt the debate on impact.
Investing for return on weak measurement techniques.
“Social impact can be a form of financial profit.” Agendas wrestle with new complexities.
Money should allow for experimentation, risk taking. But that is not the case often enough.
Development is industrializing to the detriment of wholesomeness.
He had ideas of joining the field, some NGOs.
He realized experiences were important, be close to lives, living with little money.
After accruing experience, he gets called for social innovation, working with the government and local partners.
He sees grassroots action, needing support to scale up beyond their own location.
Fundamental, radical thinking.
He thought that compromising was a good thing, until a mentor made him realize it could undermine performance of systems.
He wanted disruption, but maybe disrupting the UK was too much.
He made an effort to escape the mainstream, so he could think differently.
Learning is uncomfortable
Moments of clarity reveal sides of risk. “What more than enough looks like.“
Pushing the comfort zone is an incomparable feeling.
More selectiveness, finding out what can be done for the UK, or better think about places where things like security and infrastructure are not taken for granted.
Places with challenges welcome work, give pressure, but the chance of high reward.
Many possible ways are possible.
You have to be an excellent professional in addition to an excellent development practitioner.
Try, find out if this suits you.
Find out where you fit across the broad spectrum.
Where is your exit, and is it exciting to consider it or not.
Please share, participate and leave feedback below!
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