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Change lives. Change organizations. Change the world.
By focusing and improving how they treat their donors, nonprofits will find a higher giving retention rate. Fundraising is a critical part of a nonprofit’s business, and charities need to move beyond business as usual, stop treating givers as automated teller machines, and recognize that a worthy mission and success in addressing social problems are not enough to attract and retain givers.
Rosetta Thurman interviews Lindsey McDougle, a doctoral student at the University of San Diego pursuing a degree in Leadership Studies with a specialization in Nonprofit and Philanthropic Studies. McDougle discusses what she has learned from her consulting work in the nonprofit sector: just like in the for-profit sector, leadership, strategy, and accountability are elements that all organizations, regardless of sectoral affiliation, must value. Nonprofit organizations often provide the services and goods to those most in need. Without effective leadership, deliberate strategy, and sound accountability, nonprofits run the risk of not only damaging public image of the sector, but also of letting down those who most rely on, and need, their services.
Grassroots nonprofits get top votes for best environmental nonprofits, according to GreatNonprofits’ 2009 Green Choice Awards. The contest, held during Earth Month in April, asked people to submit reviews and ratings about environmental nonprofits. The results provide surprising insights into the kinds of organizations that are considered effective by volunteers, donors and stakeholders.
To propel young folks to the polls, a political organization mixed Web 2.0 tools with social science savvy. —By Lee Bruno
We must actively withhold support when we see the government acting in a way counter to our ideals and its own. Those of us who supported the President’s election because we share his basic principles and values should express that support by remaining independent and criticizing when necessary, rather than by becoming supplicants to or apologists for the people we put in office. That’s an idea relevant to each and all of us as citizens.
For a d.School course called “Design for Extreme Affordability,” Jane Chen and three of her classmates developed a low-cost baby incubator tailored to the needs of the developing world. That incubator—a reusable heating pouch—became the Embrace Infant Warmer, and ultimately launched Embrace and Embrace Innovations, a joint social enterprise promoting child and maternal health across the globe.
Jake Harriman,'08, explains how rejecting conventional wisdom about financing a nonprofit helped him turn his vision into a real intervention.
Professor Frank Flynn looks at the difference between “happiness” and “meaning” in life –– and how these two concepts relate to being prosocial.
The symposium was the culmination of massive open online course about retirement and pensions.
Game theory shows why "discretionary" spending programs lead to more self-interested behavior by politicians than "mandatory" spending programs.
How to identify your IT needs and get money for them. —By Zach Goldstein & Theresa M. Ellis
Why nonprofits should let donors give back their fundraising incentives.
What nonprofits and donors can learn from the closing of a venture philanthropy firm. —By Paul Shoemaker
Twenty great leaders on strategic corporate philanthropy. Review by Regina Starr Ridley
With a new approach to capitalism, writes Peter Barnes, we could simultaneously protect natural resources, reduce poverty, and make everyone substantially richer. Review by David Vogel
Many nonprofits may be reluctant to play an advocacy role because they believe they lack the resources or know-how, or because they fear they might put their foundation, corporate or public funding at risk. But advocacy work can make a big difference in shaping the public policies that affect nonprofits and their clients. Recent research shows investment in nonprofit advocacy and community organizing yields a big return in benefits for underrepresented constituencies.
Mario Morino, chairman of Venture Philanthropy Partners, opines that nothing is more important for the long-term strength of our nation than driving greater levels of innovation across and between all sectors of our economy—for-profit, nonprofit, and public. Expounding on an colleague's anecdote that innovation is like a coral reef, Morino connects the metaphor to the dot.com boom in Silicon Valley as an example of a healthy innovation ecosystem. The solution for long-term social and economic success in America lies in a national strategy of combined efforts across all regions, disciplines and walks of life—similar to the combined efforts needed to create a coral reef.
Fundraising professionals play instrumental roles at nonprofit organizations but get less pay and support than they need and deserve. The way a charity’s fundraising staff treats donors is more important than any other factor in determining whether givers give to a particular charity, according to Adrian Sargeant, Robert F. Hartsook Professor of Fundraising at the Center on Philanthropy. So if they expect to be more successful in their fundraising, nonprofits will need to increase their investment in fundraising, particularly in paying and supporting the work of their fundraisers and closing the pay gap between men and women.
“For social benefit organizations to truly “work” we all need to be part of the design, the process, the success.” -Hildy Gottlieb
“Merge Minnesota: Nonprofit Merger as an Opportunity for Survival and Growth” published by MAP for Nonprofits proves a useful source of information about the merging process of nonprofits.
Ticia Gerber sits at the center of one of the world's important current debates: How do we keep people healthy without having it cost an arm and a leg? At eHealth Initiative and LIGHT, Gerber is working across three continents to bridge the public, private, and social sectors. She talks with Globeshakers host Tim Zak in an audio interview about the role of technology in the future of health care and what it means to create a dialogue between the developed and developing world.
Changing the status quo in major organizations may seem overwhelming. Debra Meyerson offers the 2005 Stanford Net Impact conference audience strategies to effect change from within through tempered radicalism. In this audio lecture, she shares findings from her research about incremental and bottom-up change strategies to impact corporate values and advance social justice and social responsibility within organizations.
Dean Kamen has literally changed the world by turning breakthrough ideas into practical products. In this audio interview with Globeshakers host Tim Zak, Kamen discusses the power of technology to change society. He also talks about what it takes to persevere in the face of public and professional resistance toward inventions and technology that can actually make people's lives better.
Recipient of the 9th Annual Heinz Award for the Human Condition, Paul Farmer is a medical doctor and a professor of anthropology at Harvard's Medical School. He shuttles between Harvard and Haiti, where he maintains a practice at Clinique Bon Saveur, a charity hospital he founded. Farmer talks in this audio interview with Globeshakers host Tim Zak about the challenges and rewards of providing health care to the poorest of the poor, and the evolving, innovative models for getting drugs to those who need them most.
Impact investing: is it actually investing? Or is it venture philanthropy by another name?
Stanford GSB alum ('08) founded Nuru International to maximize local leadership to drive sustainable change.
A panel on the the importance of mainstreaming and investing in green chemistry for the future of energy and the environment.
Jane Chen (MBA '08) shares her journey to success in tackling one of the world's pressing issues -- low birth rates of premature babies around the world.
Many nonprofits want to expand their staff and funding base so that they may serve a broader public. Until recently, little information was available about how such organizations may do so successfully. In an audio interview with Stanford Social Innovation Review managing editor Eric Nee, William Foster shares findings from the Bridgespan Group's groundbreaking research on what it takes to be in the big leagues. He discusses types of funders to pursue, how to restructure an expanding organization, and whether going big is right for everyone.
Throughout the Energy Efficiency series, Amory Lovins, has diligently presented countless statistics and case studies to support the need for, and demonstrate the benefits of, improved energy services. In this audio lecture, he now identifies a significant number of formidable barriers to energy efficiency, and prescribes a variety of ways to overcome these barriers, including sexy marketing campaigns and a direct appeal to the bottom line.
Stanford GSB students explore innovative models for poverty alleviation in East Africa.
Now, more than ever, nonprofit leaders need to know how to maximize their social impact. Center for Social Innovation researcher Heather McLeod Grant shares some of the groundbreaking research explored in her coauthored book Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits. Drawing on her extensive study of nonprofit leaders and organizations, Grant reveals that success isn't just about "nonprofit management," but about creating larger systemic change. She shares three of the six practices for making such transformation possible.
"Once in a very rare while in history there is a fundamental pattern change. We're in one of those right now," says Bill Drayton in this audio lecture. Before our eyes the social sector is transforming to adopt the business sector's entrepreneurial architecture, where productivity and innovation are absolutely essential. Drayton explains how he sees the merging of pieces from both worlds as the way social entrepreneurs will flourish.
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.
This case provides an overview of the nonprofit organization PATH and its Safe Water Project—a five-year effort launched in late 2006 with $17 million in funding from the global development unit of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
This case provides an overview of the nonprofit organization PATH and its Safe Water Project—a five-year effort launched in late 2006 with $17 million in funding from the global development unit of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. One of the team’s primary objectives was to investigate sales and distribution challenges in this space. By conducting a portfolio of field-based pilots, the team hoped to test different models for improving customer access to these safe water products in an effort to identify scalable, sustainable, and replicable solutions. Although specific results varied across the pilots, which spanned India, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Kenya, they collectively gave rise to series of important sales and distribution insights.
This case provides an overview of the nonprofit organization PATH and its Safe Water Project. One of the key objectives of this effort was to explore how the private sector could help make HWTS products more affordable. By conducting a portfolio of field-based pilots in collaboration with commercial partners, the PATH team sought to better understand the effect of different pricing, consumer financing, and subsidy models on demand within low-income population in developing countries.
This case provides an overview of the nonprofit organization PATH and its Safe Water Project—a five-year effort launched in late 2006 with $17 million in funding from the global development unit of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The purpose of the grant was to evaluate to what extent market-based approaches could help accelerate the widespread adoption and sustained use of household water treatment and safe storage products by low-income populations.
Arrillaga created Silicon Valley Social Venture ("SV2") in partnership with Community Foundation Silicon Valley (“CFSV”), a nationally recognized public foundation that had experience working with individual donors and had established credibility within the philanthropic field. Arrillaga formed SV2 as a donor-advised fund to ensure that CFSV staff would help guide SV2 partners leverage their expertise and funding to select high-performing community organizations, thus generating the greatest social impact.
How can a certain kind of behavior actually contributes to inequalities? Specifically, do children’s social-class backgrounds affect when and how they seek help in the classroom, thereby teasing out children’s own role in educational stratification? We consider how teachers may use such information to correct these dynamics, and thus contribute to more equal access for all children at school.
Seasonal influenza leads to >200,000 hospitalizations and >8,000 deaths in the United States each year. The influenza vaccine is widely available at low cost and reduces mortality, morbidity, and healthcare costs. Nevertheless, many of those for whom vaccination is indicated fail to comply with CDC recommendations for vaccination. If low compliance is the result of careful calculations by individuals weighing the costs and beneﬁts of vaccination, it may be difﬁcult and expensive for policymakers and organizational leaders to increase vaccination rates. However, if low compliance is the result of forgetfulness or procrastination, low-cost interventions that use psychological tools may be effective at increasing vaccination rates and improving public health.
Evidence suggests that the medication lists of patients are often incomplete and could negatively affect patient outcomes. By predicting drugs the patient could be taking, collaborative ﬁltering can be a valuable tool for reconciling medication lists.
Workers who earn just below the Social Security tax threshold receive a larger tax preference for health insurance than workers who earn just above it.
Health care providers may vertically integrate not only to facilitate coordination of care, but also for strategic reasons that may not be in patients’ best interests.
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.
Andrew Thompson, CEO of Proteus Biomedical, reveals how technology can be used to make healthcare accessible to everyone in the world at the 2011 GSB Healthcare Summit.
The environmental sustainability movement has long been pushing for the development of renewable energy resources. Yet to have a significant impact in the energy market, any renewable alternative must be scalable, argues Haas School professor Severin Borenstein in this audio lecture. Speaking at the 2010 Climate Policy Instruments in the Real World conference at Stanford, he suggests where policy interventions should be focused so as to pave the way for the greater appeal of renewable technologies.
James H. Shelton of the Office of Innovation and Improvement at the U.S. Department of Education won the prestigious Tapesty Award for 2011.
"You are more likely to have your plan of care influenced by your zipcode than the stage of your disease," says Richard Migliori. "30% of our expenditures could be reduced if we have a normalization of this variation."