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Banned Books – Interview with social entrepreneur Joe Dunnigan

Joe Dunnigan is a Scottish social entrepreneur living in Tallinn, Estonia. Joe is the founder and CEO of Banned Books Museum that collects banned, censored and burned books. Joe is a member of SEIP's International Networking Club. Our intern Emilia Tongwa has conducted a short interview with him.



Please, I would like you to give a brief introduction of yourself?

My name is Joe Dunnigan. I'm from Scotland originally, but now I live in Tallinn, Estonia. I developed an interest in SE because I want my socially driven initiatives to be as independent as possible and to generate revenue to be self-sufficient.


Tell us about your project

The Banned Books Museum in Tallinn, Estonia, collects banned, censored, and burned books worldwide to preserve them for the future and communicate their stories of persecution to the public. We work with student groups at the high school level in Tallinn to educate about and develop skills related to identifying censorship and understanding the topic of censorship and freedom to publish. Our objective in the following years is to expand to student groups across all of Estonia and the wider public across Europe through cooperation with universities, libraries and museums.



What is the present state of your business?

Our museum is a non-profit, currently operating and open to the public, and we are preparing for investment.


How does SEIP contribute to your journey?

SEIP allows me to see my project in a broader context. During these pandemic times, it can often feel isolating. I do not feel part of a community here in Estonia, so the SEIP group's feedback and highlighting of different topics are valuable.


What are your short term and long term goals?

In the following year, we want to establish a regular education service that supplements our in-store revenue and establish connections with larger international institutions and bodies that have the potential to fund us over the long term, but without substantial changes to our fundamental values and operation.


Do you have a social media handle of your project you would like to share?

You can find us on facebook.com/bannedbooksmuseum




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