Stanford Social Innovation Review : Informing and inspiring leaders of social change




The latest stories on social innovation, published each weekday

SSIR blogger Salvatore LaSpada is the chief executive of Institute for Philanthropy, where he directs The Philanthropy Workshop. The Philanthropy Workshop is a strategic philanthropy training and networking program for ultra- and high-net worth individual


To Spend Out, or Not To Spend Out? What Every Foundation Should Ask Itself

An analysis of the perspectives and value of the debate of whether foundations should spend out.

By Salvatore LaSpada | Sep. 27, 2011

Technology & Design

Scaling Social Impact by Giving Away Value

An interview with Village Telco Founder Stephen Song about applying open source technology to social change.

By Roshan Paul & Alexa Clay | Sep. 26, 2011


There’s No Free Lunch: Public Health Crisis and Re-Imagining the School Cafeteria

The problem of unhealthy cafeteria food in public schools, how it contributes to obesity in America, and measures we can take to stop it.

By Eric Friedenwald-Fishman | 5 | Sep. 23, 2011

Global Issues

Sixteen Days, Eight Cities, One Question

Solving social challenges requires working with people to develop the ideas that will enable them to live the lives they want.

SSIR blogger Robert Penna had a 20-year career as a senior staffer with the New York State Senate and as a political consultant. He was affiliated with the Rensselaerville Institute for a decade, serves as Charity Navigator’s international coordinator,


$1.3 Trillion in Broken Federal Spending

The Sunlight Foundation's report assessing federal spending gives US taxpayers a decent, and troubling, view of a system that does not function well.

By Robert Penna | 2 | Sep. 20, 2011

Board Governance

Why Do New York City Board Members Give More?

Why do board cultures vary so much by geography, and how can we help bring the best of them to all cities?

By Aaron Hurst | 10 | Sep. 20, 2011

Technology & Design

Mobile Measurement: Lowering Costs and Engaging Beneficiaries

We should be paying attention to monitoring and evaluation innovation in developing countries, where technology leads to better programs.

By Matthew Forti | Sep. 19, 2011

Social Entrepreneurship

Social Entrepreneurs Must Achieve Not Survive

The sector needs to shift the definition of success from organizations that survive to organizations that actually achieve their missions.

By Rich Tafel | 5 | Sep. 15, 2011
SSIR blogger Sean Stannard-Stockton is CEO of Tactical Philanthropy Advisors. Strategic Philanthropy


Learning From Paul Brest’s Leadership at Hewlett

Philanthropy needs senior leaders who see themselves as student-leaders striving to help the field grapple with the difficult challenges it faces.

By Sean Stannard-Stockton | 1 | Sep. 14, 2011


Nonprofit, For-profit, or Something in Between?

Before answering structure and capital questions, think through your venture, your value proposition, your motivation, and your definition of success.

By Jim Fruchterman | 5 | Sep. 13, 2011