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Change lives. Change organizations. Change the world.
POOR ECONOMICS: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty by Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo
GLOBAL ACTION NETWORKS: Creating Our Future Together by Steve Waddell
EMBARQ, a network of sustainable transportation experts, has grown quickly, thanks to impressive fundraising and the design of a model program.
THE END OF FUNDRAISING: Raise More Money by Selling Your Impact by Jason Saul
The moral legitimacy of a new market can come as much from how you sell something as from exactly what you’re selling.
Dan Reicher, executive director of Stanford University's Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance, today testified before the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power in a hearing on "EPA's Greenhouse Gas Regulations and Their Effect on American Jobs."
When oil began gushing into the Gulf of Mexico last year, scientists, engineers, and operations workers all had different ideas about what to do. The biggest lesson may have been getting these different groups to work together, Marcia McNutt of the USGS told a Stanford Graduate School of Business audience.
The United States has recovered from high debt in the past but there are no easy solutions to today's estimated $14 trillion bill, panelists told a business school audience.
By 2040 Africa will have a larger workforce than China or India, speakers told a Stanford Africa Forum 2011 conference, exploring opportunities for business development in the 50-plus nations of that continent whose business opportunities are often overlooked.
Organizations such as Goodwill Industries and the Camp Fire Girls of America have endured for more than 100 years. The key to their survival is change, not more of the same, their leaders told a business school audience.
Used shipping containers become health care clinics in the developing world.
Most nonprofits use social media like Facebook and Twitter as an ancillary part of what they do. A few organizations, however, are using these tools to fundamentally change the way they work and increase their social impact.
A huge leap in the exportation of Argentinean wines can be attributed to new public-private institutions that encourage partnerships between government agencies and local industry.
What it takes to make change in the U.S. State Department.
Most poor people start businesses because they have no other choice, not because they have a burning desire to become entrepreneurs. For these “necessity entrepreneurs,” microfranchising—that is, replicating someone else’s small business model—poses fewer risks and offers greater benefits than does creating a new business from scratch.
The union of Maui Youth & Family Services, Aloha House, and Malama Family Recovery Center.
Tips for helping nonprofits do better at recruiting Millennials and Baby Boomers.
Should the focus be on more fulfilling work—or higher salaries?
Millennial generation reps will create five technology projects that will reduce the influence of wealth and special interest groups in policymaking.
Social problems are being addressed not only through the traditional nonprofit sector but also with emerging social enterprise structures such as for-profits that focus on the triple bottom line and hybrid models that blend market and nonmarket approaches. Kriss Deiglmeier, executive director of the Center for Social Innovation, moderates a panel of social enterprise leaders who discuss the unique aspects of their respective organization's legal structure, and share perspectives in establishing and maintaining enterprises dedicated to advancing social impact.
Hope Runs is a nonprofit social enterprise working in Kenya and Tanzania that uses athletics, education, and social entrepreneurship to empower AIDS orphans. In this audio interview, founders Claire Williams and Lara Vogel talk about how they have turned their idea of using marathon running to "outpace poverty" into a vital organization that partners with AIDS orphanages to have a real influence in children's lives. They discuss their model, how they use volunteers, and advice for social entrepreneurs.
An interview with Professor John Roberts about his study results on the efficacy of working from home.
The Stanford Graduate School of Business View from the Top Series hosted former Vice President Al Gore where he spoke to over 600 students on leadership, solutions for the climate crisis, and sustainable capitalism.
California, the ninth largest economy in the world, recently launched a new carbon cap-and-trade system to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Mary Nichols, chair of the California Air Resources Board, leads this program that could provide a model to support other regional or national efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
As part of the annual Conradin Von Gugelberg Memorial Lecture on the Environment, Mike Volpe, MBA '13, and Jake Saper, MBA '14, lay out an argument for a US-wide carbon policy.
Co-founder Andrew Ng, also the Director of the Artificial Intelligence Lab and an associate professor in computer science at Stanford, presented at the Leading Education By Advancing Digital (LEAD) Symposium held at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in September 2012.
When a company like Wal-Mart decides to work with suppliers to reduce their emissions, a positive ripple is created throughout the global economy. However, is there room for smaller innovators when it comes to greening the supply chain? In this audio interview, part of the Future of Green series from Stanford's Center for Social Innovation, Professor Gary Gereffi and EDF's Andrew Hutson talk about opportunities for sustainable supply chains in the age of globalization.
Bringing along the consumer, Method and Zipcar have provided greener alternatives to our everyday lifestyles. By creating this catalyst for change, they moved their products and services ahead of industry leaders and scaled this impact with market success. In this Future of Green open call series from Stanford's Center for Social Innovation, founders Robin Chase of Zipcar and Adam Lowry of Method speak on building a company around a radical and sustainable business model.
Got a great business idea? Consider taking it to Chile, where the government is now offering $40,000 grants and one-year visas to help early-stage entrepreneurs develop their companies, through a program called Start-Up Chile. In this audio interview, Stanford Social Innovation correspondent Ashkon Jafari talks with Nicolas Shea, innovation advisor to the Chilean minister of economy, about the program's genesis, goals, and progress so far.
Commissioned by KaBOOM! and authored by Katherine Fulton and alumna Heather McLeod Grant of the Monitor Institute, this case study looks at the challenges KaBOOM! faced and lessons the organization learned while pioneering an online strategy to scale its impact. This strategy involves giving away the nonprofit model online for free to empower others to act on KaBoom's behalf.
In late 2006, the PATH Safe Water Project received a $17 million grant form the global development unit of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Its purpose was to evaluate how market-based approaches could help accelerate the widespread adoption and sustained use of household water treatment and safe storage (HWTS) products among the world's poor. One key factor to consider in constructing its pilot studies was the affordability of HWTS products. This case study describes PATH's efforts to use consumer financing as a mechanism for making HWTS produce and supplies more accessible to its target market.
To help address the issue of unplanned pregnancy and maternal mortality in the developing world, researches at the University of Georgetown's Institute for Reproductive Health (IRH) recognized the need for a intuitive, natural contraception method that could meet the needs of families that chose not to use medical or surgical alternatives. IRH developed the Standard Days Method (SDM), a family planning system, and CycleBeads. Despite some reservations related to traditional values, IRH seized the opportunity to roll out sDM and CycleBeads in Mali, West Africa. Unfortunately, the initial launch did not go well and had trouble establishing effective delivery and support for the product. This case looks at how IRH adapted its approach to facilitate more effective implementation of CycleBeads across Mali.
d.light design is a for-profit social enterprise whose purpose is to create new freedoms for customers without access to reliable power so they can enjoy a brighter future. When members of d.light moved to India to set up distribution of their product, the team quickly discovered would not be as easy as they hoped. They discovered it would be difficult to convince consumers to invest in a d.light product as the market was saturated with low-quality, solar-based lighting products. Distribution posed another challenge. This mini-case study evaluates the strategy d.light adopted to differentiate the company and establish its products as credible and trustworthy to earn the acceptance of consumers and distributors.
Phoenix Medical Systems was founded to manufacture an incubator designed specifically to address the needs of low-resource healthcare providers in India. When leaders from a multinational medical equipment company approached Phoenix about a licensing deal, its founder was enthusiastic about expanding the reach of the organization. Phoenix entered into a two-year contract that allowed the multinational to use its established distribution channels to sell all of the products in the Phoenix portfolio, under the Phoenix brand name, exclusively in the Indian market. Although the partnership showed great promise, unfortunately it did not turn out to be as fruitful as initially hoped. This mini-case study describes some of the challenges Phoenix faced with its new partner and how the company responded.
In 2010, REI considered adding photovaltaic solar panels to the roofs of some of its facilities for both financial and environmental considerations. This case discusses the company's experience with solar power generation as well as providing representative assumptions for parameters in the financial analysis.
The Mulago Foundation is a private foundation focused on the prospect of creating a better life for the world's poor. When it comes to making investments, one of the most important aspects of the Mulago approach is the ability of the organization to have a measurable impact. Mulago needed to develop an approach to the measurement of impact that was simple enough for an early-state, resource-constrained, organization to carry out. This mini-case study describes the five-step framework that the Foundation developed.
The Mulago Foundation is a private foundation focused on the prospect of creating a better life for the world's poor. Concentrated in rural settings in developing countries, the foundation's work is in four areas that contribute to this overarching goal. The Foundation explicitly seeks to get involved with early-stage entities in these targeted areas so that it can grow with the organizations it supports. However, one challenge of getting involved with early-stage enterprises is that they sometimes focus too narrowly on the product rather than the capacity of management and development. This case study explores how Mulago Foundation evaluates prospective investments and the factors it considers before coming funds to projects and organizations.
The Mulago Foundation is a private foundation focused on the prospect of creating a better life for the world's poor. The Mulago team looks for investment opportunities in promising products and services that address these high-priority problems. In evaluating potential investments, the Mulago Foundation has observed how many global health innovators grapple with the choice between establishing their organizations as nonprofit or for-profit entities. This case studies Mulago Foundation's experience in the global health field and raises issues that innovators should consider as they evaluate their legal and capital structure.
Population Services International (PSI) was founded in 1970 as a nonprofit organization focused on improving reproductive health in developing countries using commercial marketing strategies. Over the years, PSI broadened its mission to address family planning, child and maternal health, and HIV and AIDS prevention, screening, and treatment. PSI opened an office in Lesotho and in 2010, a donor provided PSI/Lesotho with “a warehouse full” of female condoms (FCs) that the organization could use to help young women in the area protect themselves from HIV/AIDS. The challenge for the team was to figure out how to effectively distribute and promote the FCs since early versions of the female condom were notoriously unpopular.
Globally, pneumonia kills more children than any other illness. In developed countries, pneumonia and other acute respiratory conditions are treated via mechanical ventilators. In resource-constrained settings, however, ventilators are often not available because of their high cost. An approach has been used successfully, although not considered standard of care, is bubble continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). CPAPs are low-cost and effective, but require oxygen tanks, which are expensive to transport to rural regions. in 2011, a team of Stanford students set out to design a machine that would create the pressurized air of bubble CPAP without the cost, burden, and safety concerns with using oxygen tanks. This case explores the factors that the Inspire team members evaluated in deciding whether or not to take their prototype into development.
The Altman Foundation was established to serve the people of New York City. By 2005, the foundation was poised to take its strategic philanthropy to the next level by implementing a broader system of research and evaluation.
Waste Concern in Bangladesh had earned an international reputation for its innovative approach to waste management in Dhaka. The organization needed to consider two opportunities to raise capital for expansion from large foreign firms.
Eli Lilly’s drug, Prozac, changed the way depression was treated. The case explores the history of the making of this “blockbuster” drug, and the challenges involved.
Abbott Laboratories’ new rheumatoid arthritis drug had just been approved. The team would have to carefully orchestrate every aspect of the launch to quickly establish the product in a competitive market.
This case presents two fictional vignettes dealing with issues in labor law. In one, a company president must deal with a threat from her labor force to unionize; in the other, she must handle a situation in which one of her top salespeople is having an affair with a key customer.
A foundation's assets for supporting the process of social value creation should be viewed as part of the organization's overall investment strategy. This paper introduces the concept of the Unified Investment Strategy, an approach to achieving maximum social impact.
Stanford economists Daniel Kessler and Mark McClellan examine why hospital competition, often thought to be bad, has led to greater efficacy and efficiency in the hospital industry. They examine how costs and benefits are spread among quality quartiles in the industry, noting discrepancies in price and service for those who receive service from low-quartile hospitals, calling to question issues of equality in hospital services.
This article briefly summarizes work documenting gender inequalities in organizations, and the ways that gender theory and research have been ignored and marginalized in organizational scholarship. It then presents the idea of revisioning, and outlines several techniques for exposing hidden gendered assumptions in ostensibly gender-neutral scholarship.
This seminal paper defines the term social entrepreneurship and helps shape, what was in 1998, the nascent field of social entrepreneurship.
The paper examines micro-processes that undermine the formal power of high-ranking women in a male-dominated organization. It shows how the capacity of these women to reduce systemic causes of gender inequality is therefore more limited than it might appear.
The two-quarter Elective Course series provides lectures from a diverse group of faculty that expose students to the practical aspects of technology invention and development. The class features a presentation or discussion from one of the guest speakers or faculty. Students work in small project teams in the Biodesign prototyping lab or bench space, collaborating with the fellows of the program.
The goal of this seminar is to investigate how social technology (e.g., blogs, websites, podcasts, widgets, community groups, social network feeds) can change attitudes and behaviors in ways that cultivate social change. We study the strategies and tactics used by companies and causes that have successfully catalyzed social persuasion.
This seminar helps participants develop strategically informed action plans that are imaginative, inspiring, and workable in highly dynamic environments. Through informed debate and the writing and presentation of position papers, participants evaluate and hone their views on the seminar's critical themes.
This course focuses on the efforts of private citizens to create effective responses to social needs and innovative solutions to social problems. It equips students with frameworks and tools that will help them be more effective as a social entrepreneur.
This course surveys strategic, governance, and management issues facing a wide range of nonprofit organizations in an era of venture philanthropy and social entrepreneurship. It introduces students to core managerial issues in the nonprofit sector, such as development/fundraising, investment management, performance management and nonprofit finance.
Kate Surman, MBA '04, Administrative Director of Strategic Operations, Stanford Hospital & Clinics, discusses how she has leveraged the Public Management and Social Innovation certificate to take her career into a new direction.
A grassroots student effort led by Caroline Mullen, MBA ’12, Catha Mullen, MBA ’13, and Monica Lewis, MBA ’12, now has even more impact through a merger with Pachamama Coffee Cooperative.
Leading a Social Innovation Study Trip lands Robyn Beavers, MBA '10, in a new industry.
Jeremy Sokulsky, MBA '04, President, Environmental Incentives, discusses how he's drawing upon the tools and training he received from the GSB to help make a difference.
Vision care is something that is practically taken for granted in the United States, but that’s not the case throughout much of the world. Some 300 million around the globe suffer from correctable vision loss, leading, as Ashanthi Mathai, MBA '04, says, “to people accepting their vision impairment and adjusting their lives around it.” The result? A lower quality of life, restricted job options, and even further economic distress.
Cory Booker, the mayor of Newark, New Jersey, challenges Stanford graduates to be courageous, never lose faith and always work together during Stanford's 121st Commencement. He extolls lessons from his own father and grandfather through stories of hardship, hope, and humor. Booker encourages graduates to find and join their own "conspiracy of love" -- people who will help lift them up in times of need, provide a community and challenge them to go beyond what they think is possible.
The planet may be nearing a critical threshold, beyond which environmental changes will be rapid and unpredictable, according to a study co-authored by Stanford Professor Elizabeth Hadly.
A conversation with Stefan Reichelstein on the economics of solar power.
Scientists from Stanford and elsewhere joined to create a mini-lab in Australia's Great Barrier Reef. The device can simulate predicted future ocean conditions – such as rising carbon dioxide levels – and their effects on ecosystems such as coral.
Mountain Hazelnut of Bhutan has set its sights on a triple bottom line: financial gain for investors, alleviating poverty among farm families, and restoration of an eroded, hilly landscape.