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




Articles on social change from the latest edition of SSIR


Fall 2013

Volume 11, Number 4

The fall 2013 issue of Stanford Social Innovation Review introduces a new type of feature—Up for Debate. The inaugural topic is impact investing, and though we have covered impact investing extensively in the past, we believe that a new article—“When Can Impact Investing Create Real Impact?”—and the comments from 18 different thought leaders that follow, elevate the discussion to a new level.

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Nonprofit Management

The Secret of Scale

How powerful civic organizations like the NRA and AARP build membership, make money, and sway public policy.


Nonprofit Management

When Good Is Not Good Enough

The sector needs to shift its attention from modest goals that provide short-term relief to bold goals that provide long-term solutions.



The Future of Health Care Access

Traditional health care is a hands-on affair. But a wave of technology-driven innovation signals the emergence of a compelling new model.


Up for Debate


Impact Investing

When Can Impact Investing Create Real Impact?

It is possible for impact investors to achieve social impact along with market rate returns, but it's not easy to do.


What's Next


Socially Responsible Business

Donations on Tap

At a "philanthropub," a new kind of bar and restaurant, a portion of each patron's bill goes to a worthy cause.

By Suzie Boss | 2


A Fresh Approach to Food Stamps

In some places, users of the US Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program can supplement their diet via community supported agriculture.

By Suzie Boss | 1


Crowdsourcing the Past

A US National Archives program uses 21st-century technology to enlist ordinary citizens in the transcription of centuries-old documents.


Economic Development

An Arab Spring for Entrepreneurs?

In Tunisia, the Souk At-tanmia project provides funding and technical support to budding entrepreneurs.


Field Report


Civil Society

A Sporting Chance

In troubled spots around the world, Right to Play shows how fun and games can be a serious tool for development.


Civil Society

Bridging the Generations

Older people and foster families are forming mutually supportive communities, with help from a group called Generations of Hope.



Bold Steps in Boise

The Trey McIntyre Project, an Idaho-based dance troupe, is choreographing a novel way to manage a leading-edge arts organization.


Case Study


Technology & Design

Across the Digital Divide

One Laptop per Child Australia has developed a visionary program to bring digital technology to children in remote areas.




The Quest for Scale

An effort to improve sanitation in developing countries yields lessons in how to achieve enduring, broad-based social impact.



Accounting for Justice

The US criminal justice system will benefit from a new tool that collects and compares data on a county-by-county basis.


Social Entrepreneurship

By Youth, for Youth

Through the Global Changemakers program, people under the age of 25 are developing solutions to problems that directly affect them.



Redefining the Hospital’s Role

Boston Children's Hospital is testing new approaches to improving outcomes and reducing health care costs.




Individual Giving

Sponsoring Hope

A properly designed sponsor-a-child program can have real, long-term impact on the life course of its beneficiaries.


Corporate Philanthropy

Good (and Not-So-Good) Neighbors

Major local events, with some notable exceptions, spur locally based companies to increase charitable giving.



Poverty and Achievement, Revisited

Enrollment in a classroom with a high poverty rate doesn't necessarily affect individual student performance.


Civil Society

Markets Versus Morals

In a market context, people are apt to betray their own beliefs about right and wrong.




Urban Development

Manifest Density

Investment in "hyperdense" cities is, according to one writer, the key to solving many problems that afflict US society.

Reviewed By Carol Coletta | 1

Civil Society

Divided Minds, Divided Cultures

To address social conflicts, we must learn to balance "independent" and "interdependent" selves, two cultural psychologists argue.

Reviewed By Joan Miller

Technology & Design

Designing the Digital City

Internet technology can help us to connect, globally and otherwise, but only if we structure it well.

Reviewed By Lucy Bernholz

Human Rights

Breakthrough Leadership

The saga of Molly Melching and Tostan, her Africa-based organization, illustrates the power of community-led change.

Reviewed By Rajasvini Bhansali

Last Look


Smile Grenada

NYU's College of Dentristy partnered with the government of the Caribbean island nation of Grenada to fight tooth decay among children.