The Cabinet Office has launched a new social investment awards scheme in partnership with the bank RBS.
The Social Investment Awards are free to enter and are made up of five categories: community impact, global impact, investment readiness, investor access and new markets.
According to a statement from the Cabinet Office, the awards will highlight the effect that social investment is having and show investors that the market is ready for further growth.
The Community Impact Award will recognise the individual, organisation or product that has had the most significant social impact in communities, while the Investment Readiness Award will be given to the individual, organisation or product that has done the most to ensure that social businesses have the capacity to take on social investment.
The Cabinet Office said that the UK social investment market was worth more than £200m, a figure expected to increase to £1bn by 2016.
Entries are open until 30 September and the winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in London hosted by RBS on 27 October.
Brooks Newmark, the Minister for Civil Society, said: "This government has played a leading role in developing the market and these awards give us an excellent opportunity to shine a light on some of the most pioneering enterprises, and investors who are making it all happen."
Social investment was a pet project of Newmark’s predecessor, Nick Hurd, and has been promoted through a number of measures by the government.
This led to the government being criticised for seeing social investment as a panacea. Writing for Third Sector last week, Richard Caulfield, chief executive of Voluntary Sector North West, urged Newmark to "stop the obsession with social investment and think about wider sector needs".