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




Articles on social change from the latest edition of SSIR


Fall 2006

Volume 4, Number 3

The fall 2006 issue of Stanford Social Innovation Review has much to offer those interested in donor behavior and the culture of giving. “A New Take on Tithing” reveals that if affluent Americans contributed at levels that match their income, charitable giving would increase by $100 billion a year. “Your Inner Philanthropist” explores the downsides of giving with your heart, and “It Takes a Stick” draws a strong correlation between a society’s generosity and how punitive it is.

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Social Entrepreneurship

Reshaping Social Entrepreneurship

By focusing so much attention on the social entrepreneur we fail to recognize the thousands of others who are crafting solutions to pressing problems.

By Paul C. Light | 3

Measuring Social Impact

Drowning in Data

Funders are calling for more program evaluation, but nonprofits are often collecting dubious data, at great cost to themselves and ultimately to the people they serve.

By Alana Conner Snibbe | 9


The Other CSR

Consumers say they want to buy green products but they don't always follow through. There are, however, strategies corporations can take to increase sales of sustainable goods.

By Timothy M. Devinney, Patrice Auger, Giana Eckhardt, & Thomas Birtchnell | 1

Individual Giving

A New Take on Tithing

Too often, individuals make decisions about how much money to donate to charitable causes on an ad hoc basis. As a result, many people give less money than they can actually afford.

By Claude Rosenberg & Tim Stone | 6

Field Report


Socially Responsible Business

Weaving Businesses Together

Organic Exchange uses its global network to promote environmentally friendly fibers.

By Catherine Potter | 2

Socially Responsible Business

Color Your World

The San Francisco Recycling Center gussies up the globe with recycled paint.

By Paul Kilduff

Socially Responsible Business

From Marble to Formica

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

By Laura Beaudin

Human Rights

The Oldest Profession

How a German nonprofit is repurposing sex workers’ skills.

By John Laurenson

Case Study


Socially Responsible Business

Turning Conflict into Cooperation

The Rainforest Action Network launched a consumer boycott of several Mitsubishi companies, leading to significant changes in the way the firm and many of its partners do business.

By Peter Asmus, Hank Cauley, & Katharine Maroney


Nonprofit Management

How to Hire a Consultant

A guide for nonprofits.

By Elaine Fogel

Your Inner Philanthropist

What gets lost when donors follow their own hearts instead of recipients’ needs.

By Susan A. Ostrander | 1

Socially Responsible Business

Buying In or Selling Out?

Socially responsible brands that merge with multinationals may be abandoning their principles

By Dara O'Rourke



Nonprofit Management

Divine Intervention

Why the most religious societies have the most volunteers.

By Alana Conner Snibbe


Cultivating Cross-Sector Partnerships

An HIV organization in Botswana provides lessons in cooperation.

By Alana Conner Snibbe

Nonprofit Management

The Perils of Getting Big

Larger social service organizations may result in less innovation.

By Alana Conner Snibbe

Civil Society

It Takes a Stick

The most generous societies in the world are also the most punishing.

By Alana Conner Snibbe

Measuring Social Impact

Overhead Isn’t Everything

How donors should think about nonprofit efficiency.

By Alana Conner Snibbe | 1


For Love or Money

Innovative plays are good for all theaters, but lucrative for only a few.

By Alana Conner Snibbe


Economic Development

Review: The White Man’s Burden

Why the West’s Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good

Reviewed By Deborah Burand


Review: Effective Philanthropy

Organizational Success Through Deep Diversity and Gender Equality

Reviewed By Kevin Bolduc




15 Minutes with Alan Bersin

California’s secretary of education tackles the nation’s largest school system.

By James A. Phills Jr.