BP Seeks To Regain A Progressive Role on Climate Change

At the BP AGM, the company’s board supported a resolution calling for greater transparency on the company’s responses to the move to a low-carbon economy required by climate change. The rationale for the motion was that it was all about the long-term success of the company. With the support of the board secured, the motion was assured of success, and […]

New Social Media Platform Facilitates Consumer Citizenship

Silicon Valley start-up Scalechange has announced a suite of programs and services aimed at connecting socially conscious consumers with the causes they care about.

Scalechange, founded in 2014 provides digital marketing, crowdfunding and fund development services to mission-driven businesses such as B-Corps and nonprofits. In addition to providing services to the causes they care about, the team is creating innovative new […]

Social Venture Success: On Stance, Story and Strategy

Everybody has a story. Throughout my 20s, I was a workaholic. I was never present, and my dream was to sell my business. It wasn’t until I achieved my goal and made lots of money that I realized that this kind of success didn’t make me happy. In fact, it made me miserable.

This experience – and hiring an amazing business […]

The Voice of India’s Rural Poor: No Internet Required

At one of India’s most prestigious tech universities, IIT Delhi, assistant professor in technology for development Aaditeshwar Seth has been spearheading a social media network for the country’s rural and largely poor population—no Internet required.

Using non-data feature phones, his Delhi-based enterprise Gram Vaani is connecting India’s remote populations in Jharkhand and Bihar—two underdeveloped states—to critical resources such as information on women’s safety campaigns, […]

The Traits of Socially Innovative Companies

In this article adapted from their new book, Jerry Davis and
Chris White explore what makes some companies more fertile for social
innovation — that is, the ongoing (rather than one-off) initiatives that
have positive social impact while promoting the core mission of a
business. While there are some factors that make social innovation more
likely than not — such as intrapreneurs who will champion them — […]

A Big-Hearted Man Manufacturing Tiny Houses for Oakland’s Homeless

To date, Kloehn has built 35 miniature homes for the homeless in Oakland and San Francisco. All construction materials (except for the wheels and a few other odds and ends), are sourced from garbage. He also runs workshops and gives lectures, teaching other artists and handypeople the tricks of the trade. Following his lead, other builders have made homes for […]

Urban Farms Now Produce One Fifth of The World’s Food

Leadley is a key player in Detroit’s vibrant communal and commercial farming community, which in 2014 produced nearly 400,000 pounds of produce — enough to feed more than 600 people — in its more than 1,300 community, market, family and school gardens.

Other farms in postindustrial cities are also prolific: In 2008, Philadelphia’s 226 community and squatter gardens grew roughly 2 […]

Miley Cyrus’ New Nonprofit Helps Homeless, LGBT Youth

When Miley Cyrus wears pasties or posts photos of her pink armpits, it’s not to be a provocateur. The 22-year-old says she’s just being herself, and she wants all young people to have that same opportunity.

That’s why she’s launching the Happy Hippie Foundation to help homeless and LGBT youth, adding that not all her past relationships were “straight, heterosexual” ones. […]

Six Years, Many Lessons: Scaling Impact with Ashoka

Why don’t great ideas that are useful and working effectively to solve some of the most pressing social challenges “travel” as well as business ideas do? Why aren’t they able to scale to solve similar social challenges happening in other parts of the world? What is preventing our Ashoka Fellows from scaling their work better and faster? With these questions […]

Five Ways Social Media Is Driving Corporate Social Responsibility

With key sustainability credentials often hidden deep within long annual reports, businesses are increasingly embracing the likes of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to communicate directly with their customer base.

Global brands have long purported to place sustainability at the heart of their business plans, but actually getting customers on your side over big sustainability issues has become crucial for business survival […]

The Supply and Demand of Diversity and Inclusion

The question I am asked most frequently—after “Vu, have you tried using Proactiv?”—is “Vu, would you consider joining so-and-so board/committee? If not, can you connect me to other leaders of color who might be interested?” Apparently, everyone is having a hard time finding people of color for their board of directors and 80’s-karaoke-night planning team.

There are tons of reports and […]

How To Achieve Staff Diversity

In order to make the widest impact possible, your organization needs to appeal to a wide audience. This audience should include people from all backgrounds, including race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, income level, and so on. Otherwise, it may appear that your organization is being exclusive with one particular group and perhaps even discriminatory toward others. In order to create […]

Investing in Young Adults Benefits All of Us

Without question, the War on Poverty significantly improved outcomes for older Americans. Their rates of poverty plummeted more than any other demographic. The social programs created during that period, including Medicare and Social Security, continue to help our elder population.

Today, we face another urgent challenge that will require the same level of commitment and investment. Nearly 6 million young adults in […]

Women Are Naturally Suited To Social Enterpreneurship

Elizabeth Schaeffer Brown, founder of Uncommon Union wrote in Forbes, “The new field of social entrepreneurship is ideally suited to women, who have always had to meet complex demands that pit community against individualism. In short, we understand the necessity of seeing the economy and the world as an interconnected and interdependent system.”

Social enterprises are organizations that apply commercial strategies […]

Want To Succeed? Listen To Those You Serve

Social enterprises need to put customer satisfaction and beneficiary feedback at the center of everything they do. Making what beneficiaries think the most important metric of success is both good management and the right thing to do. My research for REDF this summer as a graduate student intern started with two basic truths. First, the business community recognizes that focusing […]

Six Myths of Sustainable Design

As I wrote last Fall, Yudelson’s program has been shown not to be all that “cheap” or “useful.” However, he is right to point out that green building has not gotten as much traction as it should, given its many benefits. Recent reports show that LEED-certified buildings can cut greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption by half, while costing 25 […]

How ‘Dumb Phones’ Can Help Stop The Spread Of Ebola

A basic cell phone may not be able to snap the best selfies, but it can be a vital tool in preventing the spread of deadly viruses.

In Ebola-stricken West Africa — a region where a lack of resources makes spreading information more challenging — UNICEF is helping young people stay safe through its U-Report initiative.

The free social tool, accessible through […]

B Corps Movement Eyeing Expansion in Asia

Among the B Corps that you may already know and whose products you use are Ben & Jerry’s, Patagonia, Couchsurfing International and Etsy. In fact, more than 1,200 firms from 38 countries and 121 industries are now certified B Corps, with more being added every week.

A B Corp is essentially a sustainable business or social enterprise that voluntarily meets higher […]

Cisco and Techbridge Inspire Girls to Discover Passion for Technology

According to the Girl Scout Research Institute, more than half of all girls say they don’t typically consider a career in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM). At Cisco, we can change that – with the help of nonprofit partners like Techbridge, we can inspire girls to discover a passion for technology, science, and engineering.

As part of National Engineers Week […]