December 3, 2019
In this recording from SSIR’s 2019 NMI conference, Mayors Libby Schaaf of Oakland and Michael Tubbs of Stockton spoke with Autumn McDonald, director of New America CA, about the best ways to build mutually beneficial partnerships between local government and nonprofits. "I've seen fear around collaboration—how is this going to take something away from me?” Mayor Schaaf says. “We have got to think big. We have got to be less afraid."
July 15, 2019
Predictive analytics can help organizations iterate rapidly, become more transparent and precise, and pinpoint opportunities to address inequities in their work. In this recording from our 2019 Data on Purpose conference, Parag Gupta, vice president of the Stupski Foundation, and Jeff Gold, assistant vice chancellor at California State University, share a case study of how public higher education institutions are successfull
July 1, 2019
Blockchain can help with a variety of social and economic challenges—from securing identity for refugee or homeless populations to minimizing the presence of conflict diamonds in the industry’s supply chain. But at the end of the day, technology is just a tool serving an end, and one that must be handled carefully to manage the values embedded within it. In this recording from our 2019 Data on Purpose conference, Cara LaPointe, s
June 19, 2019
What can help the social sector go big on data in the right ways? For one, organizations should stop underestimating their capabilities. And for another, they should build their data strategy around deeper strategic goals as opposed to funding opportunities. In this recording from our 2019 Data on Purpose conference, Kevin Miller, civic technology manager from the
May 29, 2019
What responsibilities do we have as individuals, organizations, and a society for how we conduct ourselves online? In this recording from our 2019 Data on Purpose conference, Henry Timms, president and CEO of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and former president of 92Y, offers a pledge—a Hippocratic Oath of sorts—to help social sector leaders create digital communities that give people a meaningful role in our society. “We need to mov
May 7, 2019
In a world where the pace of organizational learning is often slower than the pace of technological change, activists and nonprofit leaders must develop their “technical intuition.” Not everyone needs to become a tech expert, explains Alix Dunn, of the consulting firm Computer Says Maybe, but this ongoing process of imagining, inquiring about, deciding on, and demanding technological change is critical. In this recording from our 2019
April 23, 2019
In 2016, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, launched 100&Change—a new grant competition, that would award $100 million to an organization with the best proposal to help solve a critical social problem. The foundation awarded the grant to Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit that produces Sesame Street and other children’s educational programs, in partnership with the International Rescue Committee. The grant supports programming to e
April 9, 2019
In 2016, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, launched 100&Change—a new grant competition, to award $100 million to an organization with the best proposal to help solve a critical social problem. In 2018, Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit that produces Sesame Street and other children’s educational programs, was named the winner in partnership with the International Rescue C
March 26, 2019
Communication strategy can’t be an afterthought for organizations that want to fully embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion. It requires a careful examination of words, images, ideas, and narrative framing. Where should you start? Using insight from systems thinking and social, behavioral, and cognitive science, Ann Christiano and Annie Neimand describe how to craft stories and multimedia experiences that disrupt bias and drive social change. They present four questions to help develop an effective communication strategy—a “back-of-the-envelope” framework they also outlined in an article for SSIR. Christiano holds the Frank Karel Chair in Public Interest Communications at University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications and is director of the school's Center for Public Interest Communication, where Neimand is research director. They offer tips such as trying to connect a nonprofit’s messaging to conversations that are already happening in the broader culture and finding respectful ways to tap into the stories of those your organizations seeks to help. “The most affected are the most effective,” Christiano says.
March 12, 2019
“Community-centered” approaches to social change are nothing new. But the term has become a buzzword in the professionalized social impact world, and strategies intended to elevate the needs of grassroots movements often miss the mark. How can nonprofits do better at treating the people they’re trying to support as partners instead of patients? How can organizations shift their approaches from advocating for a population to advocating with them? Darnell Moore, head of strategy and programs for the US office of the human rights organization Breakthrough discusses these issues with: Coya White Hat-Artichoker, founder of the First Nations Two Spirits Collective and the community health and health equity program manager at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota; Mauricio Lim Miller, founder of Family Independence Initiative; and Fresco Steez, the minister of training and culture at Black Youth Project 100. “We have to be thinking about ways that our work moves us from the very cozy spaces that we tend to exist in, and out into the communities, into the streets, into the places with the people that we serve,” says Moore. “That hasn’t been the case for a lot of us, often because it’s sort of not made a priority.”
February 26, 2019
Research shows that when talented social innovators lack “invisible capital”—the so-called right pedigree, right passport, right skin color, right gender—they may fail to get the attention and investment they need to succeed. How can leaders in philanthropy improve access to capital? What tools can help nonprofit leaders overcome these barriers and get the support they need? Social entrepreneur, author, and Stanford University lecturer Kathleen Kelly Janus leads a discussion about these questions with Echoing Green President Cheryl Dorsey, Whitman Institute Co-executive Director Pia Infante, and California Endowment CEO Robert Ross. “Philanthropy is reinforcing many of the very forms of inequality that we are all working so hard to solve,” Janus says. Dorsey identifies three main systemic barriers—a lack of access to capital and opportunities, psychological stress from social exclusion, and the unequal control of resources and political power in society—as some of the challenges to achieving more equitable investment. Funders have to take a structural response to addressing these barriers, says Ross. Solutions might include changing the makeup of board rooms, staffs, and leadership teams. Or it might mean looking out for emerging leaders who haven’t already received major investment, and supporting them or having funders participate in implicit bias training. “You can’t see what you can’t see,” Infante says. “It’s important who’s in those choosing seats.”
February 11, 2019
Black women face racial and gender stereotypes and biases that often keep success in the hands of the few—and their experiences working in the social sector are no exception. To understand the unique set of racial and gender barriers—coined “double jeopardy”— that stymie black women, listen to this discussion from Makiyah Moody, senior consultant at La Piana Consulting; Tyra Mariani, executive vice president of New America; Crystal German, principal of Prosperity Labs; and Ify Walker, founder and CEO of Offor. They provide insight into everything from survival strategies to creating more inclusive work environments. “In my daily life, being black and being female comes into play on a constant basis, and that takes a toll,” German says. “It gives me a different level of appreciation. It gives me a different level of empathy.” The conversation was based on Moody’s interview series, “Black & Bold: Perspectives on Leadership,” which she expanded upon in her 2018 SSIR piece about black women’s use of kinship to overcome career barriers in the social sector.
January 29, 2019
Due to her father’s work as an engineer, Paula John moved around a lot in her youth. She often felt seen but not heard in the relationship with her dad. With her own family, she tried hard to listen, and she expected the same consideration from her local Houston health agency, she told former NPR host Bill Littlefield. When she reached out to the agency for help with an illness, and it sent her home empty-handed after a four-hour wait, she gave it harsh feedback. “She was right,” said Cathy Moore, executive director of Epiphany Community Health Outreach Services (ECHOS). “Some of the things she said were some of the things we focused on most.” Through a Listen for Good grant, ECHOS began regularly surveying clients like John and responding to their feedback to transform the way ECHOS works.
December 20, 2018
What practices make the arts more or less inclusive? At Stanford Social Innovation Review’s 2018 Nonprofit Management Institute conference, leaders from three San Francisco Bay Area arts organizations discuss how they are shaping both their organizations and their performances to make them more diverse and welcoming to all. “That's the next big shift if we are to survive—to go into the community, knock down those norms, and be something that is accessible,” said panelist Tim Seelig, artistic director of the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus. Nayantara Sen, manager of cultural strategies with Race Forward moderates the conversation with Seelig, Judith Smith, founder and director of AXIS Dance Company, and Sherri Young, executive director and founder of the African-American Shakespeare Company. They discuss the meaning of equity within their respective communities, learning from failures, and building sustainable partnerships.
November 27, 2018
When Shannon Revels came home to Oakland after nearly 15 years in prison, he found his criminal record made it difficult to get a job. But through the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO), he found a role first as a janitor then resident services counselor in transitional housing for the formerly homeless. In this interview with former NPR host Bill Littlefield, Revels discusses the importance of his being heard by a teacher he met in prison, giving feedback to CEO and seeing it acted upon, and how he created ways to listen to his residents and dignify their suggestions with action.
November 6, 2018
The nonprofit Color of Change was formed after Hurricane Katrina to use online resources in the fight for the rights of Black communities in America. Since then, Color of Change has grown into the nation’s largest online racial justice organization, with more than 1.4 million members. Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, spoke at our 2018 Nonprofit Management Institute conference about the nature of political and cultural power and the importance of continually assessing the nonprofit sector's efforts to bring about change. Robinson says, “We have to continue to challenge and ask ourselves, ‘What are we winning?’” Additional Resources View a PDF of Robinson's Nonprofit Management Institute presentation. @rashadrobinson on Twitter @colorofchange on Twitter
August 28, 2018
Technology can magnify the power of grassroots organizing and social innovation, but it can sometimes bring about societal harm, whether intentionally or not. At SSIR’s 2018 Frontiers of Social Innovation conference, Rob Reich, a Marc and Laura Andreessen faculty co-director of Stanford PACS, explores the implications for the social sector and free speech in conversation with Kelly Born, a program manager at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Madison Initiative, and Arisha Hatch, a managing director of campaigns at Color of Change, the largest online racial justice organization in the United States. They touch on topics including election integrity in the United States, online organizing around discriminatory policing, and the spread of hate speech and false information on social media platforms. “Our democracy, our informational ecosystem, has been outsourced to a very few, very powerful platforms,” says Reich. “We don’t really know how the algorithms that power them are working to facilitate the very communication that we all depend upon.”
July 31, 2018
Artificial intelligence (AI), once a niche discipline within computer science, has blossomed over the past decade—including in the social sector. In this recording from our 2018 Frontiers of Social Innovation conference, Johanna Mair, academic editor at SSIR and a professor at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, speaks with AI expert Lab Fei-Fei Li about the growing importance of AI to the social sector and the imperative to improve representation within the community of AI technologists. Li is an advocate of “human-centered AI”—an approach emphasizing human psychology, augmentation rather than replacement, and social and human impact—and in 2017, she co-founded AI4ALL, a nonprofit organization working to increase diversity and inclusion in AI. Li argues that including people of diverse backgrounds is important to putting fears about the technology at bay. “We know AI will change the world,” Li says. “The real question is who is going to change AI?”
July 17, 2018
Emerging technologies like biotech and artificial intelligence have the potential to transform so many of the systems that make up the world around us.          At our 2018 Frontiers of Social Innovation conference, Katherine Milligan, who directs the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship spoke with a few savvy social entrepreneurs who are harnessing these tools for social impact right now. Milligan speaks with Keller Rinaudo, CEO and cofounder of Zipline, which is using drones to deliver blood and medicines to remote parts of the world; Kristin Richmond of Revolution Foods, which is using data and technology to increase access to fresh, healthy food to underserved communities and schools; and David Risher, CEO and co-founder of Worldreader, a global nonprofit that provides people in the developing world with free access to culturally relevant, digital books via e-readers and mobile phones.
July 3, 2018
In the mid-1990s, NGO activists began shining a spotlight on the concentrated use of slave child labor in Pakistan to produce soccer balls for the global market. The attention prompted the industry to make deep changes in its supply chain to eliminate the problem. Today, the campaign is viewed as a model for improving labor standards, with the gains a result of government, NGO, and donor involvement.                        And yet human trafficking, modern slavery, and child labor remain pressing concerns in many industries’ global supply chains. At SSIR’s recent Frontiers of Social Innovation conference, Siddharth Kara, who directs the program on human trafficking and modern slavery at the Harvard Kennedy School, spoke with Nina Smith of Goodweave International, Leslie Johnston of C&A Foundation, which works to transform the fashion industry, and Bama Athreya of USAID, about how their organizations and sectors are addressing these issues.
June 19, 2018
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, more than 65 million people around the world have been forced from home—the highest levels of displacement on record. In her recent SSIR article, “Let Refugees Be Their Own Solution,” Emily Arnold-Fernandez, executive director of the nonprofit Asylum Access, and Brian Rawson, the organization’s associate director of advocacy and communication, make the case that better policies in host countries can enable refugees to rebuild their own lives and contribute to host economies. Priss Benbow, a fellow at Stanford’s Distinguished Careers Institute, interviews Arnold-Fernandez about what enabling environments look like in practice and how nonprofits and other social sector players can help create them. Additional resources: @EDAsylumAccess
April 19, 2018
As director of the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) Silicon Valley-based Center for Technology and Society, Brittan Heller oversees efforts to track cyber-hate, and works in partnership with technology companies and law enforcement agencies to reduce bigotry and promote justice and fair treatment in online environments. At a time when tech companies are struggling to respond to the rise of online hate speech and cyber harassment, the ADL is attempting to take a proactive approach. At SSIR’s 2018 Data on Purpose conference, Kim Meredith, executive director of the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, spoke with Heller about the ADL’s data-driven tactics as well as Heller’s background in international criminal and human rights law, and her role in one of the first high-profile, cyber-harassment cases in the United States. Additional resources: @brittanheller Leading Through Turbulent Times
April 5, 2018
To solve “wicked problems” like deforestation and persistent poverty, we not only need better data but also better indicators to identify problems and patterns in real time. Planet Inc., a geospatial organization that has deployed the largest constellation of Earth-observing satellites in history, is leading the way—using data insights to help solve these complex global problems. At our 2018 Data on Purpose conference, Andrew Zolli, Planet’s vice president of global impact initiatives, discusses what he sees as the coming age of “big indicators.” Breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, computer vision, crowdsourcing, and other related analytical approaches are converging, allowing us to detect patterns in data that would elude even the most sophisticated human analysis—collectively, these tools are known as big indicators. We have the tools to help us monitor the health of our planet instantaneously, and we are on the cutting edge of being able to predict crises like flood or famine thanks to big indicators, Zolli says. He argues that the next step is to restructure data-collection funding to create instruments that will allow us to intervene in extremely precise ways. Additional Resources: After Big Data: The Coming Age of “Big Indicators” Andrew Zolli - Globeshakers with Tim Zak The Mismeasure of Impact @Andrew_zolli
March 22, 2018
Good ideas and intentions are not enough to solve the world’s most pressing problems. Many early-stage organizations fail because they lack the tools they need to grow—especially when it comes to collecting data and measuring impact. Data is essential for nonprofit scaling because it not only attracts funders but also allows organizations to prove and improve on their mission. In this recording from our 2018 Data on Purpose conference, Kathleen Kelly Janus, a social entrepreneur, Stanford lecturer, and author of Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up, and Make a Difference, shares insights on the strategies organizations need to succeed. As Janus writes, 75 percent of organizations report that they collect data, yet only 6 percent feel they use it effectively. Data is only as good as an organization’s ability to use it. Janus argues that the nonprofit sector as a whole has a responsibility to help organizations improve in this regard. To do this, funders must end the “nonprofit starvation cycle” by supporting data collection. And nonprofits must focus their data collection on long-term outcomes and instill the importance of data collection within their staff and organizational culture. Not every outcome can be measured, but every nonprofit can find metrics that fit its services and goals. Additional resources: Creating a Data Culture Social Startup Success: How the Best Nonprofits Launch, Scale Up and Make a Difference Three Things Every Growing Nonprofit Needs to Scale @kkellyjanus
March 8, 2018
Social sector organizations are increasingly under pressure to better protect the privacy and security of their data. How should they examine their data governance practices to align with the demands of governments, their constituents, and their mission? At our 2018 Data on Purpose conference, Lucy Bernholz, a senior research scholar at Stanford’s Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society and the director of the Digital Civil Society Lab explored this topic with Alix Dunn, executive director and co-founder of the Engine Room, a nonprofit that helps activists and other organizations make the most of data and technology to increase their impact, and Amy O’Donnell, the information communications technology program lead at Oxfam.            The speakers argue that civil society organizations have an opportunity to positively model responsible data use and offer some tips for getting started. For most nonprofits, a rights-based approach to data governance requires a culture shift and involving staff from all parts of an organization, Dunn and O’Donnell explain. In this podcast you’ll also hear from conference participants who help underline the knotty ethical considerations responsible data governance often involves. Additional resources: Corporate Social Responsibility for a Data Age Using Data for Action and for Impact @p2173 @alixtrot @engnroom @amy_odonnell
January 25, 2018
Given the largely unaccountable position of power held by philanthropists, what role should they play in democratic societies? In this recording from the 2017 Philanthropy Innovation Summit, hosted by Stanford’s Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, Rob Reich, a Marc and Laura Andreessen faculty co-director of Stanford PACS, facilitates a conversation with Reed Hastings, cofounder and CEO of Netflix, and Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation. They discuss their differing approaches to charitable giving and grantmaking and how in their own ways they aim to inspire public confidence that they are learning from mistakes and improving their effectiveness.     Says Walker, “I’m less obsessed with ‘Are we holding these rich people accountable?’ than I am in saying, ‘Are we helping philanthropists have the right approach to their philanthropy,’ and ‘Are we pushing back?’ because there is a lot of arrogance.” Additional resources: Does Philanthropy Threaten Democracy? Democracy and Philanthropy @darrenwalker @reedhastings @robreich
December 28, 2017
Nonprofit leaders can’t continue to do the same things and expect different results in their work to help move the United States toward greater equity. In this podcast from our 2017 Nonprofit Management Institute, PolicyLink President Michael McAfee (@mikemcafee06) shares his perspective on being both angry and excited about the changes America needs to make—and using both of those emotions in a productive way. Before taking the helm of PolicyLink, McAfee was the inaugural director of the racial- and economic-justice research organization’s Promise Neighborhoods Institute. Before that, he was a senior community planning and development representative with the US Department of Housing and Urban Development. Here he offers advice on thinking big and having the courage to lead and advance systemic change. Additional resources: Bringing Soul to the Work of Collective Impact The Curb-Cut Effect The Role of Public Policy in Alleviating Poverty @mikemcafee06
December 14, 2017
Since its founding in 1913, the ADL has fought against the defamation of Jewish people, and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. That mission has kept Jonathan Greenblatt (@JGreenblattADL) very busy over the past two years. His tenure has coincided with the 2016 US election, a rise in hate crimes and hate groups, and an increase in cyber-hate. In this podcast from our 2017 Nonprofit Management Institute, SSIR Senior Editor David Johnson (@contrarianp) interviews Greenblatt about leading the organization through turbulent times and fostering a culture of innovation within an established organization. During the conversation, Greenblatt draws from his background in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors. During the Obama administration, he served as special assistant to the President and head of the Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation at the White House. He previously cofounded Ethos Water, a bottled water company that donates a portion of its profits to help clean water initiatives around the world, and ran the media company GOOD. Additional resources: Speaking Out When Our Values Are in Play The Lean Startup Goes to Washington @JGreenblattADL
December 1, 2017
Youth, families, and residents are the leaders of their own destinies, and yet public institutions oftentimes don’t reflect the demographics of their communities and are not guided by strategies defined community members. In this podcast from our 2017 Nonprofit Management Institute, Paola Peacock Friedrich, a consultant with Achieve Mission, interviews Dorian Burton (@Dorian_Burton), assistant executive director and chief program officer at the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust, and Brian Barnes (@BCBBarnes), a speaker on the topic of responsiveness to education and health in communities.      Barnes and Burton argue for the importance of shifting the philanthropic sector’s framework from one grounded in traditional notions of charity to one centered on justice and addressing economic, social, and political inequalities holistically, an idea they outlined in their SSIR article, “Shifting Philanthropy From Charity to Justice.” They are co-founders of TandemEd, which aims to put this justice-minded agenda into practice, supporting youth and communities to reclaim leadership of strategies and actions for communal progress. “It’s extremely important that communities are their own heroes of their own stories,” Burton says to foundation leaders. “We are not the saviors of communities.” Additional resources: “Paying in Full” “Shifting Philanthropy From Charity to Justice” @Dorian_Burton @BCBBarnes
November 15, 2017
Our Winter 2018 cover story, “The Investment Gap that Threatens the Planet,” takes a detailed look at investments in discovering and developing new solutions to address climate change. It finds that such investments are woefully low and have even been falling in recent years. The article concludes that philanthropists are particularly well-suited to bridging this investment gap in the market. On this related podcast, David Johnson (@contrarianp), senior editor of Stanford Social Innovation Review, interviews Sarah Kearney (@swoodkearney) and Scott Burger (@burgersb), who co-authored the article along with Fiona Murray and Liqian Ma. Kearney is the founder and executive director of PRIME Coalition, a public charity that empowers philanthropists to inject charitable capital into market-based solutions to climate change. Burger is a doctoral candidate in the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society at MIT and the technology investment advisor to the PRIME Coalition.                  They discuss why we need to continue developing new solutions to climate change in addition to harnessing existing solutions, why agriculture—one of the largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions—gets so little investment compared to other sectors, and why the venture capital industry in the United States is not in the business of solving social problems. “Most [venture capital] funds are in a race to go first for the next Instagram,” Kearney says, “but no one wants to go first for the grid capacity energy storage company or industrial waste heat-to-electricity conversion company that might take longer and cost more and have uncertain exit options than the 10-year venture fund structure can afford.” Additional resources:The Investment Gap that Threatens the Planet A New Vision for Funding Science 10 SSIR Articles on Climate Change Solutions @swoodkearney @burgersb
June 26, 2017
In this session, Valerie Threlfall discusses the Fund for Shared Insight‘s largest grant program, Listen for Good, which provides grants and technical assistance to dozens of nonprofits to build high quality feedback loops with those they serve. Two Listen for Good grantees, Krystle Onibukon of the Boys and Girls Club of the Peninsula and Brad Dudding of the Center for Employment Opportunities, also talk about their experience with the program.
June 5, 2017
Data has the potential to help fuel social change across the world, yet many relevant datasets remain locked away and siloed across government agencies, nonprofits, and corporations. What kind of collaboration does it take to make this data available to different actors working to create change? In a series of TED-style talks, Melinda Rolfs of the MasterCard Center for Inclusive Growth, John Wilbanks of Sage Bionetworks, Greg Bloom of Civic Hall Labs and Open Referral, and ST Mayer of Code for America talk about how to develop not only the right tools, but also the right relationships to make data collaboration happen. Jake Porway of DataKind then leads a discussion on how we can collectively harness data for the greater good. View the slides from this session here.
May 29, 2017
This panel from our Do Good Data | Data on Purpose conference features conference co-hosts Lucy Bernholz of Stanford PACS and Andrew Means of Uptake, along with Stanford education professor Candace Thille, and Kristian Lum, lead statistician at the Human Rights Data Analysis Group. The discussion focuses on the advantages and drawbacks of using data to analyze social trends in areas including higher education and criminal justice. View the slides from this presentation here.
May 15, 2017
Leading for-profit companies thrive by embracing data insights to drive increased efficiency, effectiveness, and scale. They view information and analytics as core strategic assets in running a modern business. In this talk from our 2017 Do Good Data | Data on Purpose conference, Jim Fruchterman, founder and CEO of the tech nonprofit Benetech, argues that the social sector must follow these companies’ lead. Drawing from his 2016 SSIR article “Using Data for Action and for Impact,” Fruchterman leads a discussion about how nonprofits can embrace the “Software for Good” movement characterized by data-driven decisions to better serve communities.
May 1, 2017
Building successful networks isn’t just about pairing organizations with similar missions. It’s also about human relationships. In this talk from our 2016 Nonprofit Management Institute, conservationist Steve McCormick looks at several common barriers to developing strong relationships—and ways to overcome them. Steve McCormick is cofounder and CEO of The Earth Genome, a startup venture to create the first global, open-source information platform on ecosystem services and natural capital. He previously served as president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy.
April 18, 2017
In this podcast, Ernesto Sirolli, founder of the Sirolli Institute, considers how to decentralize, democratize, and empower local communities. Sirolli has been working in the field of local economic development since 1971 and has developed a philosophy and practice that allows communities to manage their own social and economic growth. Based on his experience, Sirolli argues that NGOs must incorporate local know-how and leadership into their operation, and that a key to successful development is listening to local communities. Download the slide presentation that accompanied Sirolli’s talk here.
April 10, 2017
In his talk from SSIR‘s 2016 Nonprofit Management Institute, Derrick Braziel looks at how connecting people with the right resources and training, and building a culture of opportunity from within communities, can enable unlikely entrepreneurs, revitalize neighborhoods, and break the cycle of poverty. Urban communities across America are experiencing an unprecedented renaissance. But this boom threatens to displace long-time residents, who are typically lower income and people of color. Braziel talks about how his organization, MORTAR, uses entrepreneurship to encourage redevelopment without displacement, providing the opportunity for long-time residents to grow with their swiftly changing communities. The organization offers business courses designed for under-served people who are low-income, unemployed, high­ school drop­outs, felons, homeless, or former gang leaders. The aim of this training is to support a new kind of entrepreneur—one focused on collaboration, connecting with people from different backgrounds, and maintaining a sense of community. Download the slides that accompanied Braziel’s talk here.
March 27, 2017
In this podcast, Jane Wei-Skillern, an adjunct associate professor at the Haas School of Business at University of California, Berkeley, identifies four counterintuitive principles that are essential to effective collaboration: Trust, not control Humility not brand Node, not hub Mission, not organization Based on 15 years of research on a range of successful networks, Wei-Skillern uses detailed case studies to illustrate these principles and offers insights for how nonprofit leaders can ensure their collaborations can have an impact that is dramatically greater than the sum of the individual parts. You can view the slides that accompanied the presentation here.
March 13, 2017
Smita Vadakekalam of Heller Consulting and Sandy Reinardy of the University of Wisconsin Foundation discuss ways to avoid some all-too-common pitfalls of nonprofit technology. And Amy Sample Ward of the Nonprofit Technology Network suggests strategies to organize for success in a new political environment.
March 6, 2017
How can we reach people who don’t have home access to the internet? In this podcast, part of a partnership with Tony Martignetti Nonprofit Radio, three women who have each made digital inclusion a priority share their thoughts: Kami Griffiths of the Community Technology Network, Karen Lincoln of The Stride Center, and Alicia Orozco of the Chicana/Latina Foundation. Martignetti also talks with Diane Leonard, president and owner of DH Leonard Consulting, about creating an annual grants plan. They start with the basics, then move into goals and metrics, and end with colleague engagement.
August 22, 2016
How do you know if your idea will work, without burning through all your time and money? To solve this problem, many nonprofits are turning to the “lean startup” approach, which emphasizes flexibility, pragmatism, and experimentation. The method, pioneered by entrepreneurs such as Steve Blank, allows organizations to learn as quickly as they can about what works, so that they can build and scale successful programs while avoiding huge up-front investments that might lead in the wrong direction. In this podcast, Blank and fellow author-entrepreneur Giff Constable lead a discussion of the lean process at our 2015 Nonprofit Management Institute. Chase Adam, founder of global healthcare crowdfunding platform Watsi, and Alethea Hannemann, who formerly served as vice president of product and national programs at the Taproot Foundation, share their personal experiences with the methodology.
August 11, 2016
In a time of profound and sustained disruption and volatility, organizations need greater agility, innovation, and creativity than ever before. In this talk from our 2015 Nonprofit Management Institute, Andrew Zolli provides a big-picture view of critical trends and forces of change that will shape the decade to come. He discusses the biases that limit our understanding and explores new ways that organizations can create more resilient organizational strategies and cultures. Zolli is the co-author of Resilience: Why Things Bounce Back and the former director of the innovation and social change network PopTech. He serves as an advisor to organizations including DataKind and The Workshop School.
August 2, 2016
How can the social sector develop to meet new and ongoing challenges in the 21st century? And how can individual social entrepreneurs and organizations find their place within this changing environment? In the concluding session of our Frontiers of Social Innovation forum, Zia Khan, vice president for initiatives and strategy at the Rockefeller Foundation, discusses questions such as these with Johanna Mair, academic editor at SSIR and professor of management, strategy, and leadership at the Hertie School of Governance.
July 19, 2016
Health is more than health care. It’s also a product of several social factors, including education, income, race or ethnicity, and neighborhood environment—which means that attaining health equity will require addressing many larger social and economic issues. How can we accomplish this goal? That’s the topic of this panel from our Frontiers of Social Innovation conference, featuring Faith Mitchell, president and CEO of Grantmakers In Health, Dr. Robert Ross, president and CEO of The California Endowment, and Nick Tilsen, the founding executive director of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, an grassroots organization of the Oglala Lakota Nation. They discuss how they are applying a health equity perspective to their work, what they have accomplished, and what it will take to achieve an inclusive—and healthy—society.
July 5, 2016
In this panel from our Frontiers of Social Innovation forum in May, Rob Reich, professor of political science at Stanford University and faculty co-director of the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, moderates a discussion about how foundations, which are arguably the product of marketplace excess, can nevertheless be a vehicle to remedy inequality and advance social justice. The first panelist is Darren Walker, who as president of the Ford Foundation has spearheaded the organization’s shift toward a focus on inequality. The second is Craig Newmark, the founder of the popular online classified advertising site Craigslist, who has since established Craigconnects, a platform to support a range of organizations in areas from veterans affairs to women in tech to ethical journalism.
June 20, 2016
Organizations around the world spend billions of dollars each year trying to lift people out of poverty. Despite the best of intentions, many of these efforts fail, and many others achieve less than optimal results. But some organizations have successfully designed, funded, implemented, and scaled impressive anti-poverty interventions. In this panel, SSIR’s Eric Nee talks to leading experts from three. Asif Saleh, senior director of strategy, communications, and empowerment at BRAC, talks about what the world’s largest NGO has learned about scaling up programs. Yale economist Dean Karlan outlines lessons that Innovations for Poverty Action, the nonprofit research and policy organization he founded, has drawn from more than a decade of evaluating poverty programs around the world. And Kevin Starr talks about the evidence-based approach that the Mulago Foundation, where he is managing director, uses to find and fund poverty-fighting organizations.
June 6, 2016
In this talk from our Frontiers of Social Innovation forum in May, Trabian Shorters offers perspective and perception tools that we all can use to update our narratives on race, communities, and America’s future. He demonstrates how far too often, we focus on negative statistics about groups such as Black men, rather than emphasizing their strengths, positive contributions, and future potential. And he shows how a technique called “asset-framing” can help us tell positive stories about people and encourage the understanding, empathy, and optimism that are necessary for meaningful social change. Shorters is founder and CEO of BMe Community, a network of all races and genders committed to building better communities across the United States and promoting and celebrating the contributions of Black men. Before starting BMe Community, Shorters served as vice president of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and worked as a tech entrepreneur. His work on “asset-framing” earned him an Aspen Institute Fellowship and an Ashoka fellowship, and he is the co-editor of the New York Times bestseller REACH: 40 Black Men Speak on Living, Leading and Succeeding. If desired, you can follow along with the slideshow that accompanied Shorters’s presentation here.
May 27, 2016
In this recording from our recent Frontiers of Social Innovation conference, Angela Glover Blackwell talks about why, for United States to grow and prosper, policymakers must adopt new approaches to produce good jobs, ensure reinvestment in low-income communities, upgrade the education and skills of an increasingly diverse workforce, and create opportunities for everyone to apply their talents. She also shows how equity, inclusion, and fairness are no longer just moral issues but also economic imperatives: Equity is the superior growth model. Blackwell is founder, president, and CEO of PolicyLink, an organization working to advance economic and social equity. A lawyer by training, she previously served as senior vice president at the Rockefeller Foundation and founded Urban Strategies Council in Oakland, Calif.
May 10, 2016
In the opening keynote at SSIR‘s February 2016 Data on Purpose conference, Jake Porway shares best practices for data storytellers and shows why knowing what the data is or is not saying is critical to creating ethical and accurate visualizations. Among other things, he explains the pitfalls of pie charts, why you should be wary of word clouds, and why good data storytelling ultimately means good statistics. He also argues that the real power of data storytelling lies not just in reporting on past activity, but in making decisions that drive decision-making in the future. Porway is the founder and executive director of DataKind, a nonprofit that uses data science in the service of humanity. He previously worked at the New York Times R&D Lab, Google, and Bell Labs, and has spoken at IBM, Microsoft, and the White House. He holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Columbia University and a master’s degree and a doctorate in statistics from the University of California, Los Angeles. If desired, you can follow along with the slideshow that accompanied Porway’s presentation here.
April 28, 2016
In the closing keynote of SSIR‘s February 2016 Data on Purpose conference, which was themed around “Telling Great Stories With Data,” Andrew Means looks at the importance of using storytelling to raise funds and motivate teams—but also the risks of telling the wrong stories. He argues that in a world increasingly reliant on data, we need to be able to accurately quantify organizations’ impact, and be careful about when and how we turn to dramatic, unrepresentative stories. Andrew Means is the cofounder of The Impact Lab, a data science shop that works with nonprofits, foundations, and government agencies solving social problems. He has previously held leadership positions at the University of Chicago’s Center for Data Science and Public Policy, Groupon, and the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago. If desired, you can follow along with the slideshow for Means’ presentation here.
April 21, 2016
In the opening keynote of SSIR’s 2015 Data on Purpose conference, Nancy Lublin shares how she mobilized around data. She discusses the mistakes she has made, the lessons she has learned, and how she believes that data can be a powerful force for social good. Lublin served as’s CEO from 2003 to 2015. She is the founder of Crisis Text Line, where she currently serves as CEO, and the creator of Dress for Success.
December 6, 2014
Leveraging social media allows non-profits to reach a wide range of key stakeholders as well as promote awareness. At Social Media on Purpose 2014, Caroline Barlerin, Head of Twitter for Good, outlines what non-profits can do to maximize their effectiveness on Twitter. Barlerin is joined by HandUp director of business development Sammie Rayner, and the two discuss how non-profits can support their key initiatives by engaging audiences and disseminating content. At Twitter, Caroline Barlerin works with community outreach and corporate philanthropy, heading up Twitter for Good. In conversation with HandUp’s Sammie Rayner, Barlerin walks the Social Media on Purpose 2014 audience through how non-profits can focus on establishing brand, key partnerships, engaging content, amplification, and measurement. By focusing on these five areas, Barlerlin explains how by covering the basics and utilizing innovative ideas, non-profits can maximize the effectiveness of social media campaigns. Rayner shares how HandUp uses everything from design consistency to partnering with Twitter influencers to best leverage social media to promote HandUp’s mission. Caroline Barlerin heads Twitter for Good, which highlights Twitter’s social good initiatives around the world. Before coming to Twitter in 2014, Barlerin worked as the Director of Global Community Engagement & Communications, HP Sustainability and Social Innovation (SSI). At HP, Barlerin engaged more than 300,000 HP employees around the world in programs benefiting the community, employees, and the company. In 2012, Silicon Valley Business Journalism recognized Caroline as one of their “40 under 40.” Barlerin graduated from Vassar College and was a Sloan Fellow at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. Sammie Rayner leads business development at HandUp, a digital platform that allows people to donate directly to homeless people and neighbors in need. Before joining HandUp, Rayner founded and served as the Executive Director for Lumana, a microfinance organization in West Africa.
October 23, 2014
After he witnessed the War on Terror, Jake was overcome with the initiative. He wanted to combat what he saw as the largest source of terrorism, insurgency, and global instability: extreme poverty. While deployed in Iraq as an Infantry and Special Operations Platoon Commander in the Marine Corps, Jake Harriman was troubled by the inability of many civilians to direct their lives, due to extremely oppressive governments. To address this, Jake returned to business school and took on the challenge to alleviate extreme poverty. From this effort, Nuru was launched in 2008, aiming to implement an innovative sustainable and scalable model for ending extreme poverty. This model’s most unique attribute is in addressing the “who” instead of the “what” - rather than pouring economic aid into a targeted nation, Jake’s vision is to find and train leaders who will be able to make community decisions and problem solve as the district evolves. With a dedication to empowering people, Jake Harriman and Nuru hope to eradicate extreme poverty within this lifetime. Jake Harriman, MBA ‘08, graduated with distinction from the U.S. Naval Academy and served seven and a half years as an Infantry and Special Operations Platoon Commander in the Marine Corps. He led four operational deployments and was awarded the Bronze Star for actions in combat. From his experiences, Jake came to believe that the “War on Terror” won’t be won on the battlefield alone: the contributing causes of terrorism – disenfranchisement, lack of education, and extreme poverty – must also be eradicated. Jake left his military career and enrolled at the Stanford Graduate School of Business to build an organization focused on tackling extreme poverty. He graduated with an MBA in June 2008 and led a team to launch Nuru International in Kenya in the same year.
October 23, 2014
For nearly 60 years, donors have been partaking in a less-than-fantastic donation system. Traditionally, donors will give money to an international organization that manages money, which delivers economic relief to developing nations. However, this takes the relationship out of donating - donors can’t explicitly tell where their money is going or what their money is doing. For this reason, Paul Niehaus founded Give Directly - a nonprofit on a mission to simplify the donation process. At the core of Give Directly’s beliefs is that of the poor having an “enviable track record” of using capital to improve their lives. Paul describes studies in this podcast that have proved the poor are able to use donations extremely effectively - whether it be increasing nutrition, decreasing child labor, increasing education, or improving other sectors of life. Therefore, Give Directly offers a simpler, more personal route of donation - connecting donor to recipient. In this podcast, Paul discusses how technology, a commitment to efficiency, and dedication to improving the donation process on both ends, has made Give Directly a success. Paul Niehaus is a director and President of GiveDirectly. He is also Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of California, San Diego; a Junior Affiliate at the Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD); an Affiliate of the Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL); and an Affiliate at the Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA). His research examines the design of welfare programs in developing countries, and in particular how to control corruption. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University.
October 23, 2014
In this podcast, Professor Sutton overviews his findings in studying methods for successfully scaling excellence. To sum up these conclusions, Robert Sutton describes a few main lessons. Among these, Professor Sutton further details importance of focusing on the mindset one is trying to scale, the significance of self-driven culture in scaling, the consequence of making teams too large in the process of scaling, and the need to dispel all the identifiably unwanted parts of an organization prior to scaling. Through his enthusiasm and real-world examples, Professor Sutton explains the importance of taking a logical and thought out approach to scaling, with the caveat that undergoing such a process could be immensely good or incredibly destructive. Robert Sutton is Professor of Management Science and Engineering and a Professor of Organizational Behavior (by courtesy) at Stanford. Sutton has been teaching classes on the psychology of business and management at Stanford since 1983. He is co-founder of the Center for Work, Technology and Organization, which he co-directed from 1996 to 2006. He is also co-founder of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program and the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (also known as the
October 23, 2014
ENOVA was recently recognized as the winner of Tech Awards 2013 in the Education category for its incredible social impact. In this interview with Co-Founder Jorge Camil Starr, we learn more about ENOVA’s journey as a nonprofit venture. Through this podcast, Jorge describes ENOVA’s beginnings and the success this social enterprise has had in closing education gaps of low-income Mexican communities. He discusses his logistical methods for measuring impact, his goals for the scaling and achievement of the nonprofit, and challenges ENOVA has faced in accomplishing its mission. Jorge also speaks about his personal experience as an entrepreneur, including lessons he has learned and advice he has for aspiring entrepreneurs. Jorge Camil Starr is in charge of the development of domestic and international strategic alliances in the public, private and civil society sectors. For 11 years Jorge worked extensively in developing Mexico’s technology sector, having founded PLC Networks an innovative BPL (Broadband Over Powerline) start-up pioneering data, voice and video transmissions and also co-created LT Solutions a company dedicated to selling Thin clients. He holds a double Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Business Administration from Pepperdine University.
October 22, 2014
Nazava Water Filters was recently recognized as the winner of Tech Awards 2013 in the Health category for its innovative solution to lack of clean water accessibility in Indonesia. In this interview with co-founder Lieselotte Heederik, we learn more about Nazava’s success in combating the issues associated with limited access to clean water. Heederik talks about how Nazava’s filters are not only addressing the obvious health risks associated with unpurified water, but also making clean water more affordable, as well as reducing the toxic emissions from boiling water. The conversation covers Nazava’s logistical methods for measuring impact, her goals for the scaling and success of the company, and challenges Nazava has faced in its journey. Heederik also speaks about her personal experience as an entrepreneur, including lessons she has learned and advice she has for aspiring entrepreneurs.
October 22, 2014
Potential Energy was recently recognized as the winner of Tech Awards 2013 in the Economic Empowerment category for innovatively tackling a combination of social issues. In this interview with executive director Michelle Kreger, we learn more about Potential Energy’s journey as a nonprofit venture. Through this podcast, Michelle describes the lives of many inhabitants of IDP or Refugee Camps through the lens of cooking-related chores. Not only do these residents suffer the effects of toxic emissions from fire-related activities in their homes, but they often are burdened with physical and sexual violence associated with collecting firewood (women especially). Michelle discusses how her venture’s product – an energy and cost efficient cook stove – minimizes these issues. She also speaks to her goals for the scaling and impact of her nonprofit in the future, and the evolution of Potential Energy’s mission and focus. Finally, Michelle talks about her personal experience as an entrepreneur, including lessons she has learned and advice she has for aspiring entrepreneurs. Michelle Kreger became Potential Energy’s Executive Director after 7 years at Kiva, a nonprofit organization connecting people through lending to alleviate poverty. At Kiva, Michelle spent 5 years building their network of microfinance partners across Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, and 2 years as Senior Director of Kiva’s Strategic Initiatives group, where she was responsible for overseeing their expansion into new impact areas including clean energy, water and sanitation, innovative agriculture and higher education. In 2012, Michelle served as a Rainer Arnhold Fellow, a prestigious program for social entrepreneurs with particularly promising solutions to the big problems in health, poverty, and conservation in developing countries. Prior to joining Kiva, Michelle founded a nonprofit organization in Costa Rica, NatureKids, which focuses on English literacy and environmental sustainability in burgeoning tourist hubs. She also worked at various organizations dedicated to financial inclusion, including ACCION International. Michelle graduated magna cum laude from Boston University with a degree in International Relations and a minor in Economics.
October 19, 2014
Social enterprise is scaling up through innovative digital design of everything from robots to LEDs. The result has been a positive impact on clean water, sanitation, climate change and energy consumption. In this audio lecture, Carl Bass, President and CEO of Autodesk, discusses at Social Innovation Summit 2013 the application of design to solve social problems. Bass describes how the availability of infinite computing capacity combined with people’s willingness to share their knowledge of how to make things advances social entrepreneurship for everyone’s betterment. Inexpensive access to information and tools empowers more people to innovate through the principles of design that Bass explains. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Bass shares examples of creative small businesses that advance social enterprise through innovation. Carl Bass is president, chief executive officer and interim chief financial officer of Autodesk, a leader in 3D design, engineering, and entertainment software. Bass co-founded Ithaca Software, which was acquired by Autodesk in 1993. Since joining the company, he has held several executive positions including chief technology officer and chief operations officer. Bass serves on the boards of directors of Autodesk, Quirky and E2open; on the board of trustees of the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum; and on the advisory boards of Cornell Computing and Information Science, UC Berkeley School of Information and UC Berkeley College of Engineering. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Cornell University. Bass is a maker and spends his spare time building things—from chairs and tables to boats, and most recently, an electric go-kart.
October 6, 2014
The overuse of fossil fuels is leading to increased CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere, trapping more and more heat and warming the Earth. As a result, we’re seeing more dramatic weather patterns across the globe and the need for climate regulation is being discussed around the globe. Climate policy wonks fall in two camps: the proponents of a complicated cap-and-trade system that sets a firm limit on emissions and the supporters of a carbon tax that sets a fixed price on carbon. 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, Chairman of the California Air Resources Board, is responsible for leading this program, which could ultimately provide a model to support other regional or national efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions. At the Stanford Center for Social Innovation’s 2013 Conradin Von Gugelberg Memorial Lecture, Nichols discusses the new cap-and-trade system and the current thinking around regional and federal policies, and what these changes mean for our environment. Mary Nichols has devoted her career in public and nonprofit service to advocating for the environment and public health. In addition to her work at the California Air Resources Board, she has served as Assistant Administrator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Air and Radiation (OAR) under President Clinton, Secretary for California’s Natural Resources Agency from 1999 to 2003, and Director of the Institute of the Environment and Sustainability at the University of California, Los Angeles.
July 28, 2014
Traditional tools for evaluation and measurement fail to take into account the complexity of an interconnected and digitized world. Emerging techniques, such as developmental evaluation, improve on traditional linear, cause-and-effect models, while shared measurement increases the capacity of cross-sector collaboration. In this panel discussion, experts offer a case study-rich overview of three emerging tools: developmental evaluation, shared measurement, and big data. Kathy Brennan describes how developmental evaluation adopts a systems-learning approach absent from formative and summative designs, making it more favorable to evaluating complex, non-linear, and dynamic social realities. Patricia Bowie discusses the importance of shared measurement as a catalyst for collective learning. Researcher Lucy Bernholz warns that data collection offers as much peril as potential, and implores the nonprofit sector to think critically about how digital data is driving actions and whose voices it excludes. Presented in partnership with FSG, this panel discussion was part of the Next Generation Evaluation conference.
July 18, 2014
Three evolving approaches to evaluation in social enterprise could change its use in a significant way. In this audio lecture, Hallie Preskill, FSG managing director, opens the 2013 Next Generation Evaluation conference with examples of how leading social sector organizations are thinking about and implementing evaluation. Preskill discusses three new approaches to evaluation: developmental evaluation, shared measurement, and big data, providing context from multiple perspectives. She describes six characteristics that exemplify how social organizations are thinking about evaluation in relation to the new trends. In this podcast, Preskill explains how evaluation practice needs to evolve along with other developments in process and infrastructure to keep up with the needs of social enterprise.
July 18, 2014
Both funders and nonprofits are placing a premium on the promise of measurement and evaluation to accelerate social change. But tools like shared measurement, big data, and developmental evaluation are only powerful if they’re applied correctly. In this panel discussion, experts address how the social sector must ask the right questions when developing metrics. Alicia Grunow discusses the Carnegie Foundation’s use of improvement science to make strides in education. Hewlett Foundation representative Fay Twersky implores nonprofits to systematically solicit feedback from intended beneficiaries. Policy researcher Liesbeth Schorr underscores how the search for “certainty” stifles innovation. Presented in partnership with FSG, this panel discussion was part of the Next Generation Evaluation conference. FSG is a nonprofit consulting firm specializing in strategy, evaluation, and research.
July 18, 2014
Embracing complexity is essential in social enterprise evaluation. In this audio lecture, Brenda Zimmerman, Associate Professor of Policy at York University’s Schulich School of Business, suggests approaches for addressing complexity in evaluation systems. In the closing keynote at the 2013 Next Generation Evaluation Conference, Zimmerman explores ways to embrace complexity in social sector evaluation practice. She describes how social innovation can be fostered by applying cognitive diversity to solve structural and causative complexity problems. To remain relevant, evaluation systems must reflect the complex systems they evaluate. Zimmerman discusses sophisticated nuanced comparisons, and the role of coherence versus consistency in social enterprise evaluation. She illustrates how being strategic in complex systems is significant to social enterprise.
June 24, 2014
By a simple twist of fate, Jacob Leif found himself in post-apartheid South Africa, staring at a big paradoxical break in philanthropy - success was measured in numbers instead of long-term impact. While working at a local school, he found time, money, and aid were plentiful, along with supplies of books, computers, and daily lunches for the school children. However, once the nonprofit organization supporting the school left after the funding cycle finished, the school returned right back to where it started. Lief decided to found Ubuntu Education Fund, an organization that supports children in Port Elizabeth, South Africa through an integrated system of medical, health, educational and social services. In this episode of The Social Disruptors, Ned Breslin and Jacob Lief discuss the struggles of funding for long-term sustainable impact within the current philanthropic system of 12-month grant cycles and the power of saying “no” when funding requirements do not meet the outcomes.
May 30, 2014
“The number one rule: Don’t collaborate unless you have to.” Willa Seldon, a consultant at Bridgespan, got some laughs at the 2013 Nonprofit Management Institute, but gives some pointers on successful collaboration and how to productively evaluate common goals. To support her viewpoints, she engages Stephanie Couch and Carolyn Nelson, two experienced collaborators who provide insights on their own collaborative work with communities. Nelson and Couch explain how the personal connections that community members offer lead to great outcomes. The panel highlights how creating a shared culture can bypass disagreements and cultural differences to generate results. Willa Seldon has extensive experience in both the nonprofit and for-profit worlds. After seven years of being a director at AirTouch Communications, a multi-billion dollar wireless communications company, Seldon co-founded Milepost, a venture capital firm investing in women entrepreneurs. Seldon has since held top positions in the nonprofit sector as Executive Director of Tides Center and CEO of the Glide Foundation. She currently shares her multi-sector expertise as a consultant at The Bridgespan Group.
May 30, 2014
Social media can allow an organization’s supporters to use their personal influence to promote a cause. In this audio lecture from the 2013 Nonprofit Management Institute, Julie Dixon discusses different types of cause supporters—from passive online ones to offline activists—and how organizations can engage them. She argues that many potential supporters, believing that organizations want only monetary donations, may be discouraged from supporting a cause, even though they can support it in another way: through influence. Dixon cites the popularity of websites like Yelp to show that people are more likely to trust their peers’ testimony than an organization’s and that organizations should encourage their supporters to engage meaningfully on social media to spread their causes. By empowering supporters through the knowledge that they can have a real impact, organizations can tap into the often-ignored power of influence. Julie Dixon is the Deputy Director of Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication (CSIC). She manages the day-to-day operations of the center, including applied research, training, curriculum, partnership development, and outreach. Prior to joining the university in 2011, Julie was the Assistant Director of the Center for Social Value Creation at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. Dixon completed a master’s degree in public relations, with a focus on corporate social responsibility and sustainability, at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.
May 21, 2014
Socialstructing is a new model that empowers individuals, rather than institutions, to create impact by utilizing modern technology to build large networks. In this audio lecture from the 2013 Nonprofit Management Institute, Marina Gorbis describes how micro-contributions from people in these networks enable flexibility and unlock potential in ways that institutions cannot. She shares three stories about successful socialstructing: the transformation of an abandoned building, fostering science education, and collecting crime-related data worldwide. Gorbis explains that, through socialstructing, technology allows individuals to accomplish difficult tasks without money, staff, or management, and generates new types of value that can replace institutional approaches in the future. Marina Gorbis is a futurist and social scientist. She serves as executive director at the Institute for the Future (IFTF), a Silicon Valley nonprofit research and consulting organization. In her fourteen years with IFTF, Gorbis has brought a futurist perspective to hundreds of organizations in business, education, government, and philanthropy to improve innovation capacity, strategy development, and product design. She has written a book, called “The Nature of the Future: Dispatches from the Socialstructed World,” and has written for, FastCompany, Harvard Business Review, and other major media outlets. Gorbis holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in public policy from UC Berkeley.
May 12, 2014
At the Stanford Social Innovation Review’s 2013 Nonprofit Management Institute, Dr. James Doty criticizes Silicon Valley’s reluctance to attribute success to support and goodwill in favor of personal genius. He argues for the necessity of altruism and funding for both societal and individual benefit. Drawing on his expertise as a neurosurgeon, Doty highlights the mental and physical health benefits that result from compassion. Referencing a “compassion deficit” among the wealthy, he addresses their general fear of “wasting” funds, despite access to vast resources. Finally, using his personal story as an example of the importance of social entrepreneurship and funding support, Doty urges listeners to consider whether the amount of emphasis our society places on compassion is enough. Dr. Doty is a practicing neurosurgeon and professor of neurosurgery at Stanford University. He is also director of the Stanford Center for Compassion and Altruism, serves as a chairman of the Dalai Lama foundation (among other nonprofits), and is an active entrepreneur and philanthropist. Facing a test of character, Doty followed through on a promise to give valuable stock to a promising start-up, despite losing most of his wealth in the dot-com crash.
May 8, 2014
What is RYOT‘s game plan to change traditional media? They allow people to “Become the News.” Bryn Moser and David Darg are humanitarians. They have been on the front lines of some of the world’s major catastrophes and have seen positive transformation in communities through human impact. Frustrated with the traditional media’s inflexibility in providing actionable context around news, they decided to #ChangeThat by providing a social online hub that does: RYOT. RYOT connects action with each news story so people can get involved in the world’s most pressing issues. This month’s Social Disruptors podcast is a chat with Bryn and David on their plans to disrupt traditional media. Edward D. (Ned) Breslin is the CEO of Water For People, widely considered a force for positive change by challenging status quo approaches and offering concrete alternatives to water, sanitation, and transparency in philanthropy and aid, by offering concrete alternatives. Breslin received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship in 2011. David Darg was one of Esquire Magazine’s “2012 Americans of the Year,” and spent the last decade as a first responder and frontline contributor for Reuters, CNN, and the BBC. Currently based in Haiti, David is Vice President of Operation Blessing International and has traveled to over 100 countries. David has won numerous awards as a filmmaker, including a Special Jury Mention at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival as Co-Director of “Baseball in the Time of Cholera.” Bryn Mooser was named one of Esquire Magazine’s “2012 Americans of the Year” for his work in Haiti. As Country Director for Artists for Peace and Justice (APJ), Bryn helped build APJ’s secondary school in Port-au-Prince, which now educates 1,400 young Haitians per year. Bryn is also an award-winning film maker. His latest documentary, “The Rider And The Storm”, premiered in April in NYC as his third consecutive world premiere at Tribeca Film Festival.
April 25, 2014
In his 2013 Nonprofit Management Institute talk, Kenyon addresses how organizations need to take advantage of the growing intersection between mobile technology and nonprofits. In a digital age that is increasingly personalized, nonprofits should understand how best to utilize mobile devices without invading supporter privacy. Kenyon argues that nonprofits must base social media effectiveness on listening: What content is popular on social media? What is the community interested in hearing about? How can nonprofits use non-voice mobile technology to their advantage? Kenyon presents strategies for answering these questions and using technology to improve nonprofit outreach. John Kenyon (@jakenyon) is the Principal at Kenyon Consulting, and is a technology educator and strategist who’s advised nonprofits for more than 20 years. He educates nonprofits about using technology strategically through his consulting, as well as through teaching seminars and writing articles, knowing that they can help organizations operate more effectively and efficiently. Kenyon authored the chapter “Effective Online Communications” in the book Managing Technology to Meet Your Mission. With Beth Kanter, he helped craft curriculum for and present the “We Are Media” social media training for nonprofits, and frequently speaks on social media topics. Kenyon is a member of the Executive Consultants Select Group at the Alliance for Children & Families, and is also an adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco. Kenyon has been a featured speaker across the US, England, Australia, and online.
April 23, 2014
Aspirational communication focuses on mobilizing ordinary people to support a cause. In this audio lecture, recorded during the 2013 Nonprofit Management Institute, Doug Hattaway of Hattaway Communications outlines the components of an effective communication campaign: crafting an exciting goal, motivational and non-technical language, and a compelling call to action. Drawing on psychological and anthropological studies, Hattaway describes the types of messages that appeal to a nonprofit’s audience. Such messages are emotion-based, intuitive, and communicated in simple language that can be easily spread via word-of-mouth. Hattaway argues that an organization must speak to the heart before it speaks to the mind; it must connect with audiences by using aspirational communication to place human stories in the context of a larger narrative. Doug Hattaway is president of Hattaway Communications. In his 25 years of experience in the field of communication, Hattaway has served as a spokesperson and consultant to high-profile leaders in politics, government, business, advocacy, and philanthropy. He has worked closely with many global leaders, such as Hillary Clinton and Al Gore, and has traveled extensively to work with government leaders, political parties, and civil society organizations all over the world. Hattaway earned a bachelor of science degree in Journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and a master’s degree in English from Florida State University.
April 15, 2014
Operating a successful social enterprise requires providing meaningful economics to people, in both income and personal worth. In this audio lecture, Daniel Spitzer, founder of Mountain Hazelnuts, describes his experience in applying specific approaches to supply chains and value-creating tools to develop a successful hazelnut farming social enterprise in Bhutan. In this podcast episode of Stanford University’s Social Innovation Conversations, Spitzer details how he enhances supply chains through corporate citizenship and leverages data of all kinds captured from Android phones with specialized apps. From his hands-on experience dealing with supply chains, Spitzer describes why there is nothing is more important than people in operating a profitable business that delivers value to all stakeholders through corporate social responsibility. Daniel Spitzer is Chairman & CEO of Mountain Hazelnuts Group. Daniel has spent most of the past twenty years as Chairman and/or CEO of companies in Asia. Daniel founded several ventures that have successfully combined financial objectives with social and environmental goals, including Plantation Timber Products Group (PTP), which he built into China’s largest sustainable forestry company. PTP established US $200 million of new facilities to process logs grown by 700,000 farmers in the interior of China. Daniel spent the first ten years of his career in finance, and was Managing Director of a global merchant bank and Partner & Managing Director of a major private investment fund. He received his Bachelor’s degree from University of California, Berkeley and his Master’s from Stanford University.
April 15, 2014
Walk down most city streets and you will see a skateboarder doing tricks. Skateboarders see opportunity, not constraints, along any handrail and over any curb of urban architecture. Head to a ski slope and you will undoubtedly see snowboarders doing tricks, making jumps, and adopting skateboarding culture through their clothing, attitude and general embrace of experimental freedom. Skateboarding is a constantly evolving sport where anyone can bring something new and inventive to the table. The world of skateboarding has the power to illustrate artistry, innovation, trial and error and growth. The ethos of skateboarders can inspire social entrepreneurs in myriad ways. Join Ned Breslin as he speaks with Rodney Mullen, a great friend and a motivation to many. Rodney, at the vanguard of innovation, openness, and sharing, will talk about how skateboarding can serve as an important guide to social entrepreneurs everywhere. Edward D. (Ned) Breslin is the CEO of Water For People, widely considered a force for positive change by challenging status quo approaches to water and sanitation, philanthropy and aid transparency with concrete alternatives. Breslin received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship in 2011. Rodney Mullen is a professional skateboarder, company owner, inventor, and public speaker who practices freestyle and street skateboarding. Mullen is credited with inventing numerous skateboarding tricks that are regularly performed in modern skateboarding. Mullen has appeared in over 20 skateboarding videos and authored an autobiography, entitled “The Mutt: How to Skateboard and Not Kill Yourself.” In 2013, Mullen was inducted into the Skateboarding Hall of Fame.
April 7, 2014
Supply chains are increasingly using innovation and collaborating with civil society and government to bring novel solutions to social problems. In this panel discussion, experts describe innovations that are benefiting society and delivering economic value, including responsible e-waste recycling efforts that generate revenue, innovative methods to end child labor in the carpet industry, and environmental supply chain innovations. They discuss keys to success for notable innovations, and how corporate supply chains can leverage social innovation to build shared value and make change on a large scale. The panel was part of the 2012 Responsible Supply Chains conference at Stanford. Lakshmi Karan is director of global strategy with Riders for Health, a social enterprise delivering transportation solutions to millions. In the social sector, most recently she was the Skoll Foundation’s director of impact assessment. She has also served as a strategic advisor to global non-profits. In the private sector, Karan was a technology consultant to Fortune 500 companies. Dara O’Rourke is associate professor at UC Berkeley and co-founder of GoodGuide, the most comprehensive source of consumer information on the health, environmental, and social performance of products and companies. He has consulted to organizations such as the World Bank, the United Nations Development Programme, and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. O’Rourke was previously a professor at MIT. Steven Rockhold is global program manager for product reuse and recycling for Hewlett-Packard. This includes responsibility for operational strategy, volume, cost goals, metrics, international product take-back standards development and compliance, HP global policies, and communications. In addition, he manages HP’s vendor standards for reuse and recycling, vendor audit protocols and processes, and third-party vendor audits. Nina Smith is the executive director of GoodWeave USA. She oversees the development of GoodWeave’s child labor-free certification, which monitors weaving supply chains down to sub-contracted village and home-based production. She was formerly the executive director of The Crafts Center, a nonprofit organization providing marketing and technical assistance to indigenous artisans around the world. Smith was also president of the Fair Trade Federation.
April 7, 2014
Publishing over 97,000 pollution violations in an online open source database has been effective in advancing environmental sustainability in China. In this audio lecture, Ma Jun, Director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, describes the positive results achieved through the China Water Pollution Map, which provides each supplier’s detailed pollution data on a publicly searchable website. At the Stanford Global Supply Chain Management Forum, Jun describes how a group of NGOs made tangible gains toward environmental sustainability by motivating corporate brands to influence their supply chain partners to correct their pollution violations. In this episode of Stanford University’s Social Innovation Conversations, Jun relates how the Green Choice Alliance is successful in achieving environmental sustainability through corporate social responsibility. Ma Jun, Founding Director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs (IPE), was ranked first in Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business for 2012. He is an influential Chinese environmentalist and writer. Jun led the development of the IPE China Water Pollution Map, an open source online database created to monitor corporate environmental performance. As a result of his work, Jun was named as one of the 100 most influential persons in the world by Time magazine in 2006 and received an award from the Nature Conservancy and the group Society, Entrepreneur & Ecology (SEE) in 2009. Jun also received the 2012 Goldman Environmental Prize.
April 4, 2014
In this audio lecture, Jill Boughton describes a proven way to environmental sustainability, as demonstrated through the “Waste to Worth” program at Procter & Gamble (P&G). At the Stanford Global Supply Chain Management Forum, Boughton, as Associate Research and Development Director at P&G, shares details of P&G’s long term vision of getting to zero waste in landfills in emerging markets. Boughton discusses the disruptive innovation portfolio that she developed at P&G, a broad vision of innovation in creating zero waste. She outlines the mechanisms that stimulate and catalyze infrastructure. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Boughton relates practical steps in eliminating waste going to landfills and explains how she improved environmental sustainability through corporate social responsibility. Jill Boughton began her career at Procter & Gamble (P&G) in 1988 after obtaining a BS in chemical engineering from Ohio State University. She has managed product development activities for several of P&G’s businesses, from personal health care to paper products. Her time with P&G included a seven year stint in Caracas, Venezuela, giving her firsthand knowledge of social/economic issues important to emerging regions. While at P&G, Boughton led P&G’s “Waste to Worth” program, which supports the company’s long term environmental sustainability vision: having zero consumer waste entering landfills. In 2013, Jill Boughton was appointed CEO of Sustainable WasteResources International, a foundation formed to address the crisis caused by billions of tons of waste produced worldwide.
March 10, 2014
Retail prices of energy and lighting products in emerging markets are simply too high for end users, argues Lesley Marincola. As a result, large populations throughout the world live off the grid and have to rely on kerosene fuel and other less efficient light sources. To help combat this widespread energy poverty problem, Angaza has developed a pay-as-you-go financing platform for its solar products, as opposed to a large up-front retail price. In this podcast, Marincola also offers insights on her design and implementation of Angaza products, specifically focusing on user needs in these developing markets. Lesley Marincola, CEO and founder of Angaza Design, is a product designer (B.S.) and mechanical engineer (M.S.) from Stanford University. Prior to founding Angaza, Lesley worked with the Amazon Design team at Lab126 on the first three iterations of the Kindle, and at D2M Inc., a Bay Area design consultancy. She was recognized by Businessweek as one of “America’s Best Young Entrepreneurs,” is a World Economic Forum Young Global Shaper, was named a Forbes “30 Under 30” Entrepreneur, and is a 2013 Echoing Green Fellow. Marincola’s vision is to solve the world’s most widespread problems–like energy access–with market-driven technology innovation developed from a human-centered design approach.
March 7, 2014
Towera Jalakasi is an entrepreneur in every sense of the word. She has made the jump from being a consultant advising entrepreneurs to transforming sectors with enterprises of her own. She has helped small producer communities in her native Malawi access fair prices for their products and materials by creating links between them and outside markets. Even with all her success she still faces an uphill battle as a female entrepreneur in Africa, where the glass ceiling has yet to give way. In a business environment where women are constantly questioned on their ability to lead and have difficulty accessing traditional funding sources, Towera is a beacon of hope and a confident leader articulating a vision of success. Join Ned as he speaks with Towera Jalakasi, a successful and innovative entrepreneur as we talk about the struggles and rewards of entrepreneurship in a developing economy. Edward D. (Ned) Breslin is the CEO of Water For People, widely considered a force for positive change by challenging status quo approaches to water and sanitation, philanthropy and aid transparency and offering concrete alternatives, and received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship in 2011. Towera Jalakasi is a business consultant, entrepreneur and fair-trade expert who works with small producer communities in Malawi helping them to access fair prices for their materials, and creating links between them and outside consumer markets.
February 28, 2014
According to World Health Organization (WHO), more than 200 million resource-poor people are threatened with arsenic poisoning by drinking contaminated groundwater in South and Southeast Asia, and other regions of the world. In this university podcast, host Sheila Sethuraman speaks with Arup SenGupta, professor of civil, environmental, and chemical engineering at Lehigh University, about his project to eliminate arsenic from groundwater without using electricity or chemicals. SenGupta describes the successes and challenges of this project, which has created economic opportunity in the developing world and has helped more than 200,000 people benefit from cleaner water. Arup SenGupta is the P.C. Rossin Professor of civil and environmental engineering and also of chemical engineering at Lehigh University. His award-winning research has expanded the field of ion exchange science and technology in solving critical environmental problems, and has led to the development of new classes of hybrid ion exchangers that have been incorporated into water and wastewater treatment processes globally. SenGupta teaches courses in environmental chemistry, reaction kinetics in environmental engineering, and environmental separation and control.
February 26, 2014
Through very innovative work in the area of agriculture, scientists have worked through social enterprise in improving and securing crop yield, especially rice, which has enabled farmers in India and Bangladesh to feed their families and earn a profit from their surplus. In this audio interview with Stanford Center for Social Innovation correspondent Sheela Sethuraman, Pamela Ronald, of the University of California, Davis, talks about how her laboratory, in collaboration with other scientists, developed a variety of rice with sufficient submergence tolerance to survive severe flooding. Ronald also offers insights on the relationship between genetic engineering and organic farming, enhancing an ecologically based system of farming, and on international development, in this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast. Pamela Ronald is Professor, Department of Plant Pathology and the Genome Center at the University of California, Davis. She also serves as Director of Grass Genetics at the Joint Bioenergy Institute. Ronald’s laboratory has engineered rice for resistance to disease and tolerance to flooding, which seriously threaten rice crops in Asia and Africa. Ronald led the isolation of the rice XA21 immune receptor and the rice Sub1A submergence tolerance transcription factor. In 1996, she established the Genetic Resources Recognition fund, a mechanism to recognize intellectual property contributions from less developed countries.
February 10, 2014
What insights does a former Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter, now poet, activist and thought leader, have to teach social entrepreneurs? As it turns out, a lot more than you might imagine. MMA fighters understand what failure is–not the “I failed… now let me put my badge on” rhetoric that has become an essential, but increasingly superficial, part of any budding entrepreneur’s story. MMA fighters understand failure, and the pain that accompanies it. They get knocked down. They get knocked out. And they have to truly examine the lessons of defeat in order to perfect their strategy for success. This warrior mindset forces growth, adaptation and new creative expression. MMA fighters also know the wisdom of when to “tap out” and the necessity of dramatic pivots in some cases to achieve new areas of personal and professional development. Cameron Conaway’s journey offers fascinating lessons that show how unusual story arcs provide insightful truths for social entrepreneurs everywhere. Edward D. (Ned) Breslin is CEO of Water For People, widely considered a force for positive change by challenging status quo approaches to water and sanitation, philanthropy and aid transparency and offering concrete alternatives, and received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship in 2011. Cameron Conaway, Executive Editor at The Good Men Project, is an NSCA-Certified Personal Trainer, a former MMA fighter and an award-winning poet. His international investigations into poverty, child labor and human trafficking can be found in publications such as The Guardian, The Huffington Post and the Women News Network. Conaway is a recipient of the Wellcome Trust Arts Award and currently teaches the capstone Shakespeare Seminar for Ottawa University.
February 6, 2014
TCHO, a chocolate factory in San Francisco, has encouraged social entrepreneurship in developing countries through its innovative supply chain practices. In this short audio lecture, John Kehoe, VP of Sourcing and Development at TCHO, discusses the company’s complex supply chain. His story starts with growers in Ghana, Ecuador, Peru, and Madagascar, and moves to to their factory and store in San Francisco. The company has developed TCHOSource, a unique partnership program that connects the TCHO to its sourcing cooperatives around the world through technology. The use of technology throughout the supply chain helps increase the quality, productivity, and sustainability of the chocolate production. Technology use, starting from the co-op level, allows TCHO to help improve the livelihood and craft of its growers. TCHO is promoting social entrepreneurship from the ground up. John Kehoe began his career in international trade in Caracas, Venezuela, in 1987 with a local trading operation. After establishing a $10MM annual cotton trade, he co-founded and operated a leading cocoa exporting business, managing thirty percent of the country’s exports of premium cacao with clients in the United States, Japan, and Europe. In 1999, ED&F Man Cocoa hired Kehoe to restructure a cocoa exporting operation in the Dominican Republic. In 2002, he returned to the United States, and founded “EcoTrade,” a specialty cocoa brokerage and consultancy based in Miami. Joining TCHO in March of 2008, he has helped build TCHOSource through a $3.3MM USAID cooperative development grant. He also created a network of raw materials suppliers providing critical inventory financing. Kehoe holds a BA in economics from Tulane University and attended Venezuela’s IESA Advanced Management Program and the Owner–Directors program at INSEAD in Fontainebleau, France.
February 6, 2014
The increasing demand for energy in emerging markets is a leading driver for international development. This demand results in increased need for environmental sustainability. In this short audio lecture, Katie Hill discusses the tension between economic development and environmental sustainability. Learn how companies can push through this tradeoff while lowering energy costs and reducing business risks. Hill explains how supply chains bases in Asia and Africa attract investments in affordable clean energy and factory efficiency. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Hill describes the economic challenges manufacturers face with energy in emerging markets, such as Kenya, compared to in the U.S.. This contrast poses a compelling argument for the use of renewable energy in factories around the world to lower energy costs and further responsible economic development. Katie Hill received a joint MBA/MS in Environmental Science at Stanford University in 2012. Katie’s career is focused on energy infrastructure and natural resources in emerging markets. Having spent six years living in Asia and Africa (India, China, Nepal, Uganda, Botswana), Katie has acquired a deep understanding of these markets. Prior to Stanford, she was the Energy Portfolio Manager for Acumen Fund, an impact investment fund, where she evaluated more than 300 clean technology businesses and managed $4 million in investments. Katie has also worked for McKinsey & Company, Generation Investments, Dalberg Advisors and the China Greentech Initiative.
January 31, 2014
For TCHO, San Francisco’s only chocolate factory, social entrepreneurship is the focus. In this audio lecture, company executive John Kehoe talks about how the firm not only produces high-end chocolate products, but also helps farmers in developing countries. He discusses challenges associated with sourcing and cultivating quality organic cocoa beans, and what it takes to invest in and work with growers. Kehoe spoke at the Stanford Graduate School of Business at the invitation of the International Development Club. John Kehoe is Vice President of Sourcing and Development at TCHO, San Franciso’s only chocolate factory. He began his career in international trade in Caracas, Venezuela in 1987. Since the cocoa market in Venezuela was liberalized in 1991, his work has been dedicated to the procurement and marketing of specialty cocoa, working closely with farmers, exporters, importers and chocolate manufactures. In 1999, ED&F Man Cocoa hired Kehoe to restructure a cocoa exporting operation in the Dominican Republic. In 2002, he returned to the United States, and founded EcoTrade, a specialty cocoa brokerage and consultancy based in Miami. Through friendships and contacts developed over the years, Kehoe expanded his experiences to initiate new relationships and diversify supply in Ecuador, Jamaica, Trinidad, and Madagascar, and to include fair trade cocoa from Ghana and the Ivory Coast. This work was considered by many as pioneering a market in the United States for specialty cocoa.
January 21, 2014
Developing a successful social media strategy enables effective nonprofit management, organizational growth, and strong relationships with target audiences. In this audio lecture from the Social Media on Purpose conference, presented by Stanford Social Innovation Review and Tides, journalist and new media strategist Marcia Stepanek provides a robust framework for building a social media strategy that fits with the organization’s mission. Stepanek recommends specific steps that include identifying and analyzing goals, defining the audience, assessing tool options, and deciding which channels are right for your organization to help it achieve greater impact. Marcia Stepanek is a journalist, new media strategist, and author of the forthcoming book, Swarms: The Rise of the Digital Anti-Establishment; her work has appeared in The New York Times, the Huffington Post, Contribute, and Stanford Social Innovation Review. A former Knight Fellow at Stanford, Stepanek teaches social media strategy at New York University and curates an annual speaker series on disruptive innovation in the advocacy sector. She blogs regularly about technology at and lectures internationally on the influence of the Internet on social systems.
October 10, 2013
Nearly all consumers eat, wear, or use items that are tainted by slave labor, which presents social responsibility challenges. In this short audio lecture, Katrina Benjamin describes the conditions enslaved people are in, and outlines four specific examples where slavery is an integral part of the consumer supply chain, as well as the degrading circumstances of enslaved adults and children. Benjamin addresses the complexity of slavery today, indicating the factors underlying slavery that must be addressed if slavery is to be eradicated. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Benjamin describes the environmental sustainability problems associated with slavery, and suggests ways that large and small companies, NGOs, and non-profit organizations can work to eliminate slavery through cooperative social responsibility.
October 10, 2013
LaborVoices brings unprecedented transparency to supply chain management to improve social responsibility. In this short audio lecture, Dr. Kohl Gill, CEO of LaborVoices, Inc., discusses his company’s mobile technology platform. He uses crowdsourcing to let workers’ voices bring accountability to supply chain management. Dr. Gill believes that real time information drives improvement in workforce management from both a social responsibility and operational perspective. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Dr. Gill shows how LaborVoices helps to create real-time, long-term relations and communication from supply chain executives to the factory floor. This supports accountability across all stakeholders, creates a better overall work environment, and improves social, environmental, and company performance. Dr. Kohl S. Gill is the CEO of LaborVoices, Inc., providing intelligence to global workers and supply chain executives. Dr. Gill served in the U.S. State Department, as the South Asia and Middle East Labor Affairs Officer for the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. Dr. Gill served as an Indicorps Fellow in the slum areas of Delhi, India, fighting both petty and grand corruption at the local level. Dr. Gill is a graduate of the California Institute of Technology and the University of California, Santa Barbara, with a Ph.D. for his work in semiconductor physics.
September 25, 2013
Ned Breslin kicks off the series by telling us where he draws his inspiration from and where he gets his perspective on social change from–punk rock. With a disregard for tradition and a fierce desire to challenge the norm, the punk rock ethos is the heartbeat of a story of social entrepreneurship. To the rise of social entrepreneurship, punk rock offers a narrative by breaking sideways in a world that tends to go straight ahead. With the immensity of today’s global challenges, Ned argues that the story arc of punk, its relentless push for change, offers important insights into how social entrepreneurs operate everywhere, whether they like punk rock or not. Host Ned Breslin is the CEO of Water For People. Ned found himself working on a water project in northern Kenya in 1987 and never looked back. Twenty years later he moved back to the US to join Water For People as its Director of International Programs, eventually becoming CEO in 2009. He is a recipient of the 2011 Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship.
August 16, 2013
Being sustainable at the core requires corporate social responsibility that thinks beyond just good works. In this audio lecture, Coca Cola Chief Administrative Officer, Alex Cummings, shares his company’s experience applying environmental sustainability as an essential element to sustainable business. Mr. Cummings relates how Coca Cola aims to double its business in a decade through social entrepreneurship. He describes how they are employing social enterprise to improve packaging and supply chain logistics. They use organic material in plastic bottles and empowering one-woman distribution companies in rural Africa. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Cummings describes how, instead of philanthropic giving, strategic partnerships are used to strengthen corporate citizenship in local communities. Coca-Cola uses renewable resources and recycling projects to enhance environmental sustainability and international development.
July 30, 2013
Today’s model of consumerism does not prioritize the efficient use of resources throughout the supply chain. Consumers just don’t use the full lifetime of a product. In this talk, e-commerce social entrepreneur and former Walmart sustainability executive Andy Ruben emphasizes opportunities for efficient design, production, and reuse of consumer products, from the perspective of corporations and consumers. Speaking at the 2012 Global Supply Chain Management Forum, Ruben details ways to improve supply chain efficiency. He explains why he hopes this new model for product exchange will revolutionize the way we think about what we buy, and what we throw away.
July 15, 2013
Former Vice President Al Gore describes how Corporate Social Responsibility is essential to Environmental Sustainability, as he speaks with students in the View from the Top Series at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. In this audio lecture, Mr. Gore explains why global warming is the most significant manifestation of a deeper underlying collision between human civilization and the planet’s ecological system. He shares his insights on leadership and climate crisis solutions, and provides data on population fertility management and the effects of current technology. In this Social Innovation Conversations, Stanford University podcast, Mr. Gore details how hyper-inequality is threatening to both Capitalism and Democracy, and identifies the need for reforms in markets, before suggesting alternatives to short term thinking and how to achieve Sustainable Capitalism.
July 12, 2013
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives are usually thought of as top-down, with the interests of company executives taking precedence over other workers. In this talk, CB Bhattacharya, a visiting Stanford professor and author of Leveraging Corporate Responsibility: The Stakeholder Route to Maximizing Business and Social Value, examines why the traditional approach to CSR should be reexamined. Speaking at a seminar organized by the Stanford Center for Social Innovation, he details how his research supports stakeholder-driven corporate social responsibility initiatives. He explains why this change from top-down to stakeholder-driven initiatives means higher returns for us all.
July 11, 2013
“Poverty is not just about an economic challenge. Extreme poverty is a condition where families cannot make meaningful choices to determine their own future.” The role of Nuru is to put those choices back on the table. In this audio interview, Jonathan Chang speaks with Jake Harriman, Founder and CEO of Nuru International. Nuru works to raise awareness of poverty in the developed world. At the same time they foster self-sufficiency in remote rural communities in East Africa. From combat operations in Iraq to Stanford Business to rural Ethiopia, Harriman traces his personal path towards sustainable solutions to poverty. This show was recorded as part of the Impact Innovators series, in which we speak with some of the most important players in the world of impact investments.
April 30, 2013
Human capital is the most valuable asset in the social sector. Developing an effective human capital strategy enables nonprofits to grow, scale, and achieve greater impact. In this audio lecture from the Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Nonprofit Management Institute, Omidyar Network partner Sal Giambanco discusses how nonprofits can create a recruiting framework and demonstrate organizational value to employees. He explains how to attract and engage an excellent team. By sharing examples from his years of coaching nonprofit executives from around the world, he explores questions such as: How do you attract the right talent to your organization? How do you enable them to be successful? How do you build a talent pipeline to engage future leaders? In this lecture, Gimabanco discusses techniques a nonprofit can use to execute a successful human capital strategy.
April 25, 2013
Good leadership requires moving across boundaries of sector, race, ideology, class, and political affiliation. Instead of competing for resources or working in isolation, leaders should reach across divides to develop healthy networks of trust and collaboration. In this audio lecture from the Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Nonprofit Management Institute, Rockwood Leadership Institute president Akaya Windwood discusses how we can get movements and sectors to work together to advance the common good. She shares specific approaches and tools for leaders to step out of their comfort zones. These enable a collective effort that builds mutually beneficial relationships.
April 23, 2013
Whether we are struggling to generate fresh ideas or staring at problems with no solutions in sight, the spark of creative genius often seems out of reach. In this audio lecture from Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Nonprofit Management Institute, Stanford Professor Tina Seelig discusses how we can unlock our creative genius through a set of tools and conditions we each have in our control—our “innovation engine.” Based on real-world examples and a dozen years of experience teaching courses on creativity and entrepreneurship in the Stanford School of Engineering, Seelig challenges traditional assumptions about creativity to show us how we can seek out the right resources and environment to fuel our innovation engines. She contends that just as the scientific method demystifies the process of discovery, there is a formal process for unlocking the pathway to innovation.
April 16, 2013
While branding has been traditionally perceived as a tool for fundraising and public relations, nonprofits can take a new approach to brand management that effectively drives their mission and maximizes impact. In this audio lecture from Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Nonprofit Management Institute, Harvard researcher Nathalie Kylander challenges traditional branding principles and proposes a new framework for developing a more strategic brand. By examining the concepts of brand democracy and brand affinity, Kylander discusses how a strategic brand can create greater social impact and tighter organizational cohesion. She examines what successful branding looks like in the nonprofit sector and how the rise of social media and technological change can drive the development of a clear, strong, well-managed brand.
March 26, 2013
What exactly is the new “social economy,” how did it come about, and what are its implications for nonprofit management? In this audio lecture, philanthropy, policy, and technology researchers Lucy Bernholz and Rob Reich explore some possible answers to these questions. Evaluating the changes that the social economy has created, Bernholz and Reich focus on new options that are available for both doers and donors. Speaking at Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Nonprofit Management Institute, the two analyze the impact that this new economy is having on nonprofit management and how social leaders can adapt.
February 22, 2013
How can smaller and local nonprofits dramatically increase their impact? In this audio lecture, Heather McLeod Grant, senior consultant at the Monitor Institute and co-author of Local Forces for Good, shares ideas and case studies of high-impact small and local nonprofits, and how these organizations have leveraged outside forces and agencies to great success. Speaking from Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Nonprofit Management Institute, McLeod Grant analyzes how many smaller nonprofits managed not only to survive the economic downturn, but also to thrive during that time.
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