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Social Innovation

Center for Social Innovation

Social Entrepreneurship

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Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2008

By tailoring its methods to local values and needs, Rare has slowly seeded conservation programs in 40 countries. Yet as more and more species teeter on the brink of extinction, the organization must expand quickly. Here’s how the boutique nonprofit is delivering customized Rare Pride social marketing campaigns to millions of people in the planet’s most fragile ecosystems. —By Suzie Boss

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article

First Social Enterprise World forum talks about how to use business to accomplish social outcomes.

Resource: Blog Post

Strategies for following one’s social enterprise bliss.

Resource: Blog Post
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2008

MBA students turn their attention to social enterprise.

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2008

THE SOUL OF A NEW MACHINE by Tracy Kidder  Review by David Bornstein

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article
[photo - New Technology]

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. 

Resource: News Article
[photo - Jake Harriman]

Jake Harriman,'08, explains how rejecting conventional wisdom about financing a nonprofit helped him turn his vision into a real intervention.

Resource: News Article
[photo - Sarah Soule]

A Stanford scholar discusses a collaborative, human-centered approach to solving some of the world's most pressing problems.

Resource: News Article
[photo - crowdfunding]

A group of economists turns to an unusual source for funding: strangers.

Resource: News Article
[photo - Vivek Garg]

An Indian army vet builds business relationships across battle lines in conflict-torn Kashmir and Northeast Indian villages.

Resource: News Article
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2006

Socially responsible brands that merge with multinationals may be abandoning their principles. By Dara O'Rourke

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2006

Larger social service organizations may result in less innovation.

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2006

How the Union Bank of California attracts lower-income people to traditional banking. By Laura Beaudin

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Fall 2006

Social entrepreneurship has come to be synonymous with the individual visionary – the risk taker who goes against the tide to start a new organization to create dramatic social change. The problem with focusing so much attention on the individual entrepreneur is that it neglects to recognize and support thousands of other individuals, groups, and organizations that are crafting solutions to troubles around the globe. By Paul C. Light

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article
Stanford Social Innovation Review: Summer 2006

Jim Collins outlines how lessons for becoming the best can translate from companies to social organizations.  Review by Robert Gertner

Resource: Stanford Social Innovation Review Article

The long-term strength of our nation relies on the level of commitment we have toward innovation. Influx of talent, new mindset and new network technologies are the new convergence of innovation. President Obama must broaden the focus across and among the private, public, and nonprofit sectors—to seek and spark the most promising innovations whether they come from commercial or social entrepreneurs, executives or line workers, community leaders, public servants, researchers, or citizens who don’t fit into any of these categories.

Resource: Blog Post

The White House is about to announce the creation of the Office of Social Innovation. 

Resource: Blog Post

This blog is the last of Marcia Stepanek’s coverage of the Skoll World Forum 2009 at Oxford University.

Resource: Blog Post

Reporting from the 6th annual Skoll World Forum for social innovation

Resource: Blog Post

“There’s no question: with public trust in CEOs and corporations at rock-bottom and the change mantra out of Washington [and Davos] and this week’s TED2009 still freshly potent, cause-wired social entrepreneurs have never had a better opportunity to boost traction globally for their Web-powered ideas.” - the author

Resource: Blog Post
Video/Audio : All | Audio | Video
[photo - social entrepreneurs personal pathways]

In this panel discussion, social entrepreneurship is the common thread uniting a leader of a multibillion-dollar private equity fund, a dot-com carbon cowboy, and one of the original Schwab social entrepreneurs. All of them are harnessing business to build a better world. Paul Fletcher, Dan Whaley, and Nic Frances give their Stanford audience a glimpse into the personal side of being a social entrepreneur.

Resource: Audio
[photo - John Sage]

Combining idealism with a genuine love of business, John Sage cofounded the social enterprise company Pura Vida, one of the largest distributors of fair trade organic coffee in the world. In this University podcast, he discusses his mission to improve the lives of people in coffee-growing regions. Sage explains how Pura Vida works at the intersection of the for-profit and nonprofit sectors, showing how the two can be blended to generate both revenues and social good.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Dennis Macray]

Starbucks has taken environmental sustainability and corporate social responsibility seriously in its work with coffee farmers. In this audio lecture, Dennis Macray discusses how the United States' leading coffee retailer is reshaping its business practices and reinventing the international coffee trade.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Paul Lamb]

Nonprofit management now requires the innovative use of information technology. In this Stanford podcast, nonprofit technology consultant Paul Lamb explores how the web is transforming nonprofits and NGOs. He looks ahead to the potential that ubiquitous mobile computing, virtual worlds, user-generated content, and social networking have to upend traditional constraints and to open new doors.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Chip Heath]

In the world of social enterprise, why do some ideas survive and others die? Stanford Graduate School of Business Professor Chip Heath reveals the secret in this audio lecture. He provides frameworks and advice to help social innovators launch their endeavors.

Resource: Audio
[Video-Leadership in the War Against Extreme Poverty]

Stanford GSB alum ('08) founded Nuru International to maximize local leadership to drive sustainable change.

Resource: Video
[Video-Unleashing Green Chemistry: A Societal Need and Business Opportunity]

A panel on the the importance of mainstreaming and investing in green chemistry for the future of energy and the environment.

Resource: Video
[Video-Jane Chen: Crazy Enough to Change the World?]

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.

Resource: Video
[Video-Hau Lee: Value Chain Innovation in Developing Economies]

Hau Lee explains how value chain innovations can help entrepreneurs in developing economies grow their businesses, and what multinational corporations can learn from them.

Resource: Video
[Video-Using Entrepreneurial Approaches to Solve the Problems of Global Poverty]

In turbulent times like ours, we need “hard-edged hope,” says Jacqueline Novogratz, the much-celebrated founder of the Acumen Fund. Affirming that the world is indeed a better place now than it was 40 years ago, she traces her own journey from a childhood witnessing racial inequities all around her in Detroit to a career leading the field of social impact investing. Novogratz rallies the community of Stanford business graduates to be part of the new generation of innovative problem solvers.

Resource: Video
[photo - Yasmina Zaidman]

How can philanthropy and markets be used to promote international development? In this audio lecture, Yasmina Zaidman describes how the Acumen model supports microenterprises that are helping to alleviate poverty. She also shares the opportunities and challenges the organization faces.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Pamela Hartigan]

Why are social entrepreneurs sometimes considered "unreasonable," and how are they different from business entrepreneurs? In this audio interview, author Pamela Hartigan discusses with Design for Change host Sheela Sethuraman how these pesky pioneers are creating markets that are changing the world. She also talks about Volans Ventures, her new enterprise dedicated to integrating the worlds of social and environmental innovation with business-driven wealth creation.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Dr. Helen Lee]

In developing countries, many tests for infectious diseases never reach the market because there is little financial incentive to pharmaceutical companies to get them there. In this audio interveiw, Alana Conner, senior editor at the Stanford Social Innovation Review, converses with Helen Lee, whose research department at the University of Cambridge has developed tests that allow for the rapid detection--and thus treatment--of diseases in rural settings around the world.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Rodrigo Pizarro]

In Chile, the farming of salmon seemed the ideal solution to the depletion of world fish populations--until it became clear that acquiculture causes its own environmental problems. In an audio interview by Eric Nee, managing editor of the Stanford Social Innovation Review, Rodrigo Pizarro explores the challenges of acquiculture and the foundation's project to reduce the impact of salmon farming through a sustainable system of seaweed cultivation.

Resource: Audio
[photo - Nick Yeo]
TakingITGlobal is an online social network that enables socially conscious youth worldwide to learn about and take action on global issues. Kriss Deiglmeier, the Center for Social Innovation Center executive director, conducts an audio interview with Nick Yeo about how the endeavor leverages its online platform to partner with other organizations and inspire youth to make a difference.
Resource: Audio
Case Studies : All | Academic Cases
No Results Found

Mark Alsentzer, an investor in Earth Care, took over leadership of the business when it got into trouble in 1996. He focused on a two-pronged strategy to invest in research to speed up the manufacturing process to turn plastic into lumber, and to increase product recognition.

Resource: Academic Case
Research Papers : All
[photo -  J. Gregory Dees]

This seminal paper defines the term social entrepreneurship and helps shape, what was in 1998, the nascent field of social entrepreneurship.

Resource: Research Paper
Courses : All
[photo - Jennifer Aaker]

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.

Resource: MBA Course
[photo - Rick Aubry]

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.

Resource: MBA Course
[photo - Jane Wei]

This course explores the challenges and opportunities related to social entrepreneurship. Students study nonprofit, for-profit, and hybrid organizational forms, and examine issues from a variety of perspectives, including that of entrepreneur, CEO, funder, and board member.

Resource: MBA Course
[photo - Jim Patell]

Students apply engineering and business skills to design product prototypes, distribution systems, and business plans for entrepreneurial ventures in developing countries. The aim is to address challenges faced by the world's poor.

Resource: MBA Course
[photo - Debra Meyerson]

This course is designed to help students understand and manage human systems, exercise leadership, and work effectively with other people, specifically within the context of culturally diverse groups and organizations. The underlying premise is that diversity can present unique challenges and opportunities.

Resource: MBA Course
Innovators : All
[photo - Farm to Cup - Root Capital Lending]

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.

Resource: Alumni
[photo - BAPAR]

It was the suicide of a young man that turned Vivek Garg toward using business as a means of fostering peace and reconciliation.

Resource: Student
[photo - Jeff Skoll]

The March/April edition of Stanford magazine features a profile of alumnus Jeff Skoll, one of only 20 people who've ever given away $1 billion. He hopes to engage everyone in the planet's survival by leveraging the power of Hollywood.

 

Resource: Alumni
[photo - Yohei Iwasaki (MBA '10)]

Yohei Iwasaki and mOasis are enabling farmers to grow more crops from less water and to cultivate previously underutilized land, producing a sustainable environment that significantly reduces food and water shortages.

Resource: Alumni
[photo - Jane Chen (MBA '08)]

Jane Chen's passion for helping others has taken her on an incredible journey from doing social work in China to founding Embrace, a company that sells premature infant incubators.

Resource: Alumni
[photo - Jacqueline Novogratz]

In turbulent times like ours, we need “hard-edged hope,” says Jacqueline Novogratz, the much-celebrated founder of the Acumen Fund. Affirming that the world is indeed a better place now than it was 40 years ago, she traces her own journey from a childhood witnessing racial inequities all around her in Detroit to a career leading the field of social impact investing.

Resource: Innovators
[Video-Using Entrepreneurial Approaches to Solve the Problems of Global Poverty]

In turbulent times like ours, we need “hard-edged hope,” says Jacqueline Novogratz, the much-celebrated founder of the Acumen Fund. Affirming that the world is indeed a better place now than it was 40 years ago, she traces her own journey from a childhood witnessing racial inequities all around her in Detroit to a career leading the field of social impact investing. Novogratz rallies the community of Stanford business graduates to be part of the new generation of innovative problem solvers.

Resource: Video
[photo - Lee Zimmerman]

As co-owners of Evergreen Lodge in Yosemite, a social enterprise that combines environmental stewardship and socially-minded employment strategies, Lee Zimmerman and Brian Anderluh discuss keys and barriers to success, potential for scale, and opportunities for the future.

Resource: Innovators
[photo - Dana Hendrickson]

Through Rebuild Hope, Dana Hendrickson and others help wounded veterans and their families overcome short-term financial obstacles.

Resource: Alumni
[photo - Leena Ved]

Leena Ved provides high quality educational opportunities for under-served children, and addresses the financing gap in impact investing by supporting early stage companies.

Resource: Alumni
Corner