ISI (InForma Social Incubators)

This Entry has been submitted.

ISI (InForma Social Incubators): InForma Social Incubators

Porto, PortugalPorto, Portugal
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
$250,000 - $500,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

The Social Incubator InForma wants to stand out as a response to the increasing and critical unemployment lived in Portugal, specially youth unemployment, which according to official data already exceeds 40%.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if we lived in a world without unemployment, where to create a business it was easy, fast and secure. And if there was a new social response, with shared spaces, between young and elderly people?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

The unemployment affects worldwide reaching over 200 million people (75 million youth), 30 million more than before the financial crisis of 2008 and has tended to increase over the coming years. Long periods of unemployment be linked to the deterioration of your physical well-being and social breakdown: • Mild mental disorders, • Depression, • Low self esteem, • Feelings of frustration with life, • Cognitive difdifficulties.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

It just wants to welcome an unemployed people, providing them the knowledge and skills, low-cost techniques and physical infrastructures, which allow them to develop ideas and businesses. With this project, entrepreneurs of any age and training can build their business; obviously endowed first with adequate knowledge. Another innovative point is the availability of commercial spaces in the country and also on other ONG’s (ONGs network) in order to use existing functional areas, such as the laundry, hairdresser, training rooms, doctor's office, gym, among others that are under-utilized, providing not only employment and creation of new business but also obtaining revenue by ONGS and therefore increasing their own sustainability.


High Recognition of Merit by the Portuguese Republic President; Recognition: Strategic Importance for the National Economy; Active Citizens of Europe Award 2013 - European Commission; Prize Social Innovation - EDP 2013 (Electric Power Company);
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Real Story: In 2013 we has in the Elderly Support, an man, 81 years old, retired, who worked a lifetime in the manufacture of gold pieces with ancient techniques, some already forgotten in time. On the Community Youth Group, we has a girl, 21 year old, Degree in Jewelry and she was unemployed. We decided to join the elderly and the young in the Social Incubator, suggested: "Why you don’t record all the old gold manufacturing techniques (without this registration, the techniques were lost when the elderly died) and then create a line of modern jewelry, using the techniques of yesteryear. With this, today she has worldwide jewelry awards and is producing jewelry for the prestigious brand "Burberrys."

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

During 2014 we created a pilot in the facilities of the Day Center (Social response to elderly people) of the Association of Schools Jesus, Mary, Joseph and we supported the development of 31 business and 122 jobs (young entrepreneurs). So the team now intends to carry out the 2nd phase of the project which is replication throughout the country, and after throughout the World via the NGOs network using a model of Social Franchising. With an experienced team and partners who believe this idea will be able to transform it into a true Social Response able to tackle the scourge of unemployment and therefore make it a very important tool in local development, intergenerationality, active aging, sustainability...

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

With the Portuguese Social Security, we are creating a social franchising ISI (It reads EASY), with a Manual that teaches NGOs to replicate the concept, creating a network of social incubators in underutilized spaces, without the investment of NGOs because leverages existing resources and infrastructures. We'll cover 5,000 NGOs in Portugal. On average, each NGO can support 25 business and 100 young entrepreneurs per year; that is we can have capacity for 125,000 businesses and 500,000 entrepreneurs. Create a business is ISI. Ending unemployment is ISI. ISI - InForma Social Incubators

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

The ISI franchising, unlike other franchise systems, does not require any type of entry rights, just as income obtain the rate of 5% royalty, so the success depends on the success of its franchisees, proving that we believe in this innovative model. Royalties will support the management and marketing structures. This model does not require investment of replicating NGOs because leverages existing resources and infrastructures.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Unemployment is a serious highly neglected issue. The traditional incubators are restrictive, generally adapted to innovative business from technology sector, developed by young graduates. With this project, entrepreneurs of any age and training can build their business; first obviously endowed with adequate knowledge / learning. Furthermore it is intended to encourage the creation of traditional business with easy access to any citizen, such as sewing or cleaning services, because the innovative businesses are, by nature, imbued with greater risk.

Founding Story

In constant search for solutions to the problems of society in which we live and always with a vision of sustainability of social institutions, a group of entrepreneurs decided to undertake a study to understand which social responses should create in their community. As a result, they realized the absence of answers to the elderly population and unemployment. Began to build a day center for older people and realized that the law required functional spaces were created with very little use and then decided to create the first permanent incubator, using underutilized spaces of the Day Centre, joining young and old people in the same space.


*Nuno Santos - Business Manager - Executive Director - Full-time *Tiago Pereira - Social Worker - Deputy - Full-time *Paulo Santos - Business Manager - Director - Full-time *Hugo Tavares - Portuguese Social security - Advisor - Part-Time *Carvalho Guerra - High Prof. Catolica University - Director - Part-time *Rui Pedroto - CEO MAM Foundation - Advisor - Part-Time *Several - EDP Foundation - Advisor - Part-Time (And several partners)