About the Award

We believe that the urban social challenges in many Asian cities are quite alike (e.g. ageing population, environmental degradation and poverty), these pressing problems need to be solved immediately, and whenever the traditional model does not satisfy the needs of the society, innovations are demanded.

It is time for City Re-think!

Everyone can take a first step to kick start an innovative and sustainable business solution to improve the city we live in.

Asia Social Innovation Award (ASIA) was launched in 2008 and aims to promote social entrepreneurship and business 2.0 concepts in Asia through a social innovation idea competition. The Award provides a platform for idea-stage entrepreneurs to kick start projects through cross-country networking and expertise exchanges.

How to start?

Start From a Business Solution and Think Social
  • Choose an urban issue that you are most concerned about and committed to tackle.
  • Think of a business idea that can address the urban issue, either by creating a new social start-up or by incorporating the social solutions in an existing business.

Some examples of social enterprises in Hong Kong as below:

Company Nature of Business Description Social Issue(s)
Diamond Cab Taxi Service Barrier-free transportation in Hong Kong using taxi license Aging population, lack of point-to-point barrier-free transportation in Hong Kong
LightBe Social Realty Property agency Provide affordable housing subleasing to Single-mother with child in Hong Kong Poverty, housing needs in Hong Kong
RunOurCity Sports events company Organize running events to engage the community and empower youth in Hong Kong Youth problems, the city communication

The ASIA competition consists of three phases:

(i) 1st Phase: Local Region Competition

(ii) 2nd Phase: Coaching in CVC Entrepreneurs' Lab

(iii) 3rd Phase: Asia Region Competition

Read more


Social Ventures Hong Kong
Sonova Institute
Social Ventures Hong Kong (SVhk) was founded in 2007. It is Hong Kong’s first non-profit venture philanthropy organization. SVhk provides financial and non-financial support to social enterprises as part of its dedication to nurture social innovation.

SVhk launched ASIA in 2008, under its Sonova Institute program. Social enterprises in SVhk’s portfolio include Happy Grannies (ASIA 2009 winner, singleton elderly well-being service), Diamond Cab (barrier-free transportation service), Green Monday (platform to promote Green culture), Light Be (affordable social realty) and Playtao Education (education and student development service).

SVhk is an active member of Asia’s social enterprise and investment community, frequently contributing to organizations such as the Asia Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN) and the Social Enterprise Summit.

Regional Partners

ChangeFusion is a Bangkok-based organization that grows social entrepreneurs for creative and sustainable change.

Through its ChangeVentures platform, ChangeFusion supports and invests into social enterprises. It provides portfolio social enterprises with equity and loan investments, and business support from marketing to professional services. Portfolio social enterprises cover various industries such as web and mobile technology, sustainable agriculture, sustainable tourism or community-based tourism, affordable healthcare, community-scale renewable energy and fair trade, among others.

ChangeFusion also aims to facilitate better ecosystems for social enterprises to succeed in Thailand and Asia. ChangeFusion is a non-profit institute under the Thai Rural Reconstruction Movement Foundation under the Royal Patronage.
Centre for Social Initiatives Promotion
Centre for Social Initiatives Promotion (CSIP) is a Vietnamese non-governmental and not-profit organization. CSIP provides a leading role in supporting the emerging social entrepreneurship sector in Vietnam. CSIP was established in 2008 in response to the gradual emergence of organizations who are seeking to adopt social entrepreneurial solutions to the social and environmental challenges existing in Vietnam. CSIP aims to provide direct nurture and support to social enterprises in order to maximize their chances of success. CSIP also work and engage with other stakeholders to improve the operating environment for social enterprises more generally.
C. (cdot) aims to facilitate the development and spread of social innovation by making a connection between people from different regions and countries. The organisation designs and organizes an international conference & seminar, provides consulting or coordination for building a global network and train the youth & social activists. It also links social entrepreneurs, investors and support organisations to activate social business and their communication in Asia and also other countries, and plans to construct a platform which enables them to create values and opportunities for social innovation.
Lien Centre for Social Innovation
Lien Centre for Social Innovation, a partnership between the Lien Foundation and Singapore Management University, was established in 2006 to advance the thinking and capability of the social sector. The Lien Centre contributes to a more equitable, inclusive and vibrant society by addressing social needs through innovative approaches. The Lien Centre drives socially innovative solutions by strengthening social sector organisations so that they become influential and effective partners with business and government. The Lien Centre also works at the intersection of the public, private and social sectors to catalyse social innovation.
Social Enterprise Insights
Social Enterprise Insights (SEI) was officially launched in 2012. It is the first Mandarin-based online information platform about social enterprises and social innovation from Taiwan. It aims to share knowledge and connect the dots in the sector, to support social innovation and social enterprises in the Greater China region.

SEI plays three roles in the field of social innovation: a Knowledge Centre (an “all-in-one” information platform to advance and inspire social innovation), a Connecting Hub (a social network of forums and workshops to connect change makers) and a Social Incubator (an integrated platform for resources to support social enterprises and start-ups).

SEI is a major contributor to the social innovation scene in Greater China, with about 1,000 articles published on its website and a track record of over 15 events with over 2,000 participants in total.
UnLtd Indonesia
UnLtd Indonesia is an organization supporting early stage social entrepreneurs and social enterprise in Indonesia. UnLtd Indonesia’s vision is an ecosystem where social entrepreneurs and social enterprises easily blossoms and gain support to grow. In this ecosystem the public sector, private sector and civil society support each other and work together in such a way that social entrepreneurship values and principles are norms of praxis. UnLtd Indonesia’s mission is to provide relevant information, financial assistance, consulting and mentoring for early stage social entrepreneurs and social enterprise to start their endeavours. As part of Global Social Entrepreneurship Network, UnLtd Indonesia perceives itself as part of the global social entrepreneurship and social economy movement and contributes to grow conducive ecosystem for social entrepreneurship nationally and internationally.


CVC Community
Credit Suisse
The Wave

Supporting Partners

  • ACCA
  • Asia Value Advisors Ltd
  • Aveda
  • AVPN
  • B Current Impact Investing
  • Banpu Champions for Change
  • Convoy Social Fund
  • Coworkinc
  • Education For Good
  • ELIV
  • Enactus
  • Equal Opportunities Commission
  • ETIC
  • FabCafe Bangkok
  • Give2Asia
  • HKU General Education Unit
  • Good Factory
  • Good Seed
  • CUHK Hong Kong Social Entreprise Challenge
  • HK Social Enterprise Incubation Centre Ltd
  • HKUST Entrepreunrship Centre
  • Hong Kong Social Workers Association
  • Hong Kong Social Enterprise Summit
  • KisStartup
  • LU Department of Sociology and Social Policy
  • MaD
  • MaD Thailand
  • MagicSE
  • MYSC
  • DBS-NUS Social Venture Challenge Asia
  • Scope Group
  • HKCSS-HSBC Social Enterprise Business Centre
  • CUHK Shaw College
  • SIE
  • PBMT Social Ventures
  • PLUS
  • The GoodLab
  • UnLTD Thailand
  • Vseed
  • OSU