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These are the top countries where women social entrepreneurs are seeing the best results

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The best place in the world be a woman social entrepreneur is probably not what you think it is.

The best place for female-led social enterprises is the Philippines, according to a brand new poll from the Thomson Reuters Foundation. Russia, Norway, Canada and Malaysia helped round out the top five.


"If you are a woman in this sector, your best place is Asia," the foundation's CEO Monique Villa said. They "can show the rest of the world how to encourage such a vital business sector."


What is a social enterprise?

Simply put, social enterprises are for-profit businesses have social missions at their core.

These are companies like Warby Parker (though exact business models vary widely) that make money from selling goods or services, and then invest their profits into the business and/or a social cause. In doing so, both the business and society benefits.

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Credit: Thomson Reuters Foundation

Villa hopes the findings will help leaders "explore more innovative ways of doing business for good."

Asian countries swept the top spots

Of the countries that fill out the top 10 list for best places for female social entrepreneurs, a majority were in Asia. Those countries include the Philippines, Malaysia, China, Hong Kong, Thailand and Indonesia.

"Women interviewed across Asia described a fairer playing field and higher drive to put compassion over valuation as the reason women are doing so well as social entrepreneurs," Reuters researchers said of the poll results.

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Credit: Thomson Reuters Foundation

In Malaysia, for instance, 67% of experts said it was easy for social enterprises to get grant funding and 70% said the same about getting access to necessary non-financial support.

Where does the United States fall?

While the United States claims the title for best place to be a social entrepreneur in 2016, when it comes to being a female social entrepreneur, it came in at an embarrassing 43rd. Why? 

For the portion of the poll on female-led social enterprises, the two main points that determined a country's rank were:

* How well women were represented in leadership roles
* Whether women were paid the same as men.

America did poorly over "concerns women are paid less than men," the poll found. 

SOCAP16 - Monique Villa - Thomson Reuters

WATCH  | The poll surveyed nearly 900 experts, looked at 45 of the biggest economies in the world and was conducted in collaboration with Deutsche Bank, UnLtd and the Global Social Entrepreneurship Network.

Were you surprised by the findings?

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