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

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Articles on social change from the latest edition of SSIR

 

Fall 2014

Volume 12, Number 4

The fall 2014 issue of Stanford Social Innovation Review features a number of articles on mission-driven for-profit companies. The Case Study, “From Petitions to Decisions,” examines Change.org, which has been profitable since 2010. It boosts more than 70 million registered users and is signing up new ones at the rate of 4 million per month. The company has ambitious plans to move beyond petitions to become a platform for a new sort of digital democracy.

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Features

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Global Issues

Global Problem Solving Without the Globaloney

It’s time to put an end to the “flat world” thinking that guides the work of all too many social change organizations.

 
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Impact Investing

The Rise of Gender Capitalism

Investing with a gender lens creates financial returns and improves the lives of women and girls and their communities.

 
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Microfinance

The Next Stage of Financial Inclusion

Research on the needs and habits of the poor shows that nonprofits can serve a vital function in expanding access to financial services.

By Dean Karlan | 1
 
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Impact Investing

A New Vision for Funding Science

Philanthropic investment can close the funding gap between science research and the commercialization of science-based products.

 

What's Next

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Technology & Design

When the “Doves” Fly

Increasing numbers of businesses are adopting a social mission as an integral part of their work.

 

Economic Development

Cultivating a Neglected Field

Seven lending organizations are teaming up to meet the large-scale needs of smallholder farms in the developing world.

 
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Urban Development

Design for Cleaner Living

A team of social innovators is devising ways to put urban India on track to a tidier future.

 

Health

Built WELL

Taking a lead from LEED certification, a new standard aims to promote healthy construction of homes, offices, and other structures.

 

Field Report

Health

A Model of Health

In Nepal, a US-based nonprofit is partnering with the national government to deliver full-service medical care in remote areas.

 
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Technology & Design

Substance Over Style

An international design award based in Denmark celebrates products and projects that aim “to improve life.”

 

Education

Mentor for America

Thanks to the New Teacher Center, beginning educators gain support that will help them thrive in a challenging profession.

 

Case Study

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Civil Society

From Petitions to Decisions

After Change.org placed petitions at the center of its platform, the size of its membership soared. But operating a high-volume petition site isn’t enough for its leaders. Includes magazine extras.

 

Viewpoint

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Energy

Get Rid of the Grid?

An emerging business model that aims to reduce energy poverty holds real promise. But it needs a jump-start.

 
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Foundations

A Good Ending

Leaders at the Atlantic Philanthropies are modeling best practices for winding down a large, high-profile foundation. Includes magazine extras.

 
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Economic Development

Rethinking Poverty

Recent discoveries in brain science shed light on what holds the poor back—and on how to help them get ahead.

 
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Human Rights

Equal Effort

Behind the recent advance of gay marriage rights lay a decade of careful planning and diligent collaboration. Includes magazine extras.

 

Research

Civil Society

Social Work as a Social Wedge

In China, a new kind of NGO has started to embed the values of civil society in its provision of social services.

 

Socially Responsible Business

How Fair Trade Grew

Variances in the experience of producer countries strongly affect how fair trade markets have evolved.

 
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Philanthropy

As Giving Goes Global

Philanthropic activity is increasing worldwide in ways that reflect a shared ethos of humanitarian "virtue."

 
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Nonprofits

The Stories That NGOs Tell

Traditional aid organizations and newer, more volunteer-driven groups view their work in notably different ways.

 

Books

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Economic Development

No Value

A "big think" look at the future of capitalism fails to reckon with the factors that make capitalism so resilient.

Reviewed By Timothy Ogden
 
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Education

Taking a Charter Flight

In one prominent effort to reinvent public schools, promise and performance don't necessarily match up.

Reviewed By Catherine DiMartino
 
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Impact Investing

A Guide to “Good” Investment

Two impact investing pioneers offer a primer on efforts to generate both social benefits and financial returns.

Reviewed By Cathy Clark
 

Last Look

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Health

The Gift of Life

Papua province is the epicenter for HIV/AIDS in Indonesia, the world's fourth largest country.

 

SPONSORED SUPPLEMENT

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Nonprofit Management

Essential Mindset Shifts for Collective Impact

To be effective, collective impact must consider who is engaged, how they work together, and how progress happens.

 

Nonprofit Management

Defining Quality Collective Impact

To sustain collective impact, we must bring more rigor to the practice by drawing on lessons from a diverse array of communities to define what truly makes this work unique.

 
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Nonprofit Management

The Role of Grantmakers in Collective Impact

Grantmakers can catalyze connections and lay the groundwork for collective impact initiatives to take shape.

 
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Nonprofit Management

Power Dynamics in Collective Impact

Collective impact initiatives must build the power needed to accomplish their common agenda.

 

Nonprofit Management

Roundtable on Community Engagement and Collective Impact

The Aspen Institute Forum for Community Solutions gathered scholars and practitioners for a conversation about engaging the community in a collective impact initiative.

 
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Nonprofit Management

Aligning Collective Impact Initiatives

Communities can suffer from too many initiatives, creating overlap, inefficiency, and frustration.

 
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Nonprofit Management

Learning in Action: Evaluating Collective Impact

Successful collective impact initiatives embed evaluation in their DNA and use it to make better decisions about the future.

 

Nonprofit Management

Achieving Collective Impact for Opportunity Youth

Emerging lessons on using data and resources to improve the prospects of young people.

 
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Nonprofit Management

Making Public Policy Collective Impact Friendly

Government policies too often impede, rather than enhance, collaborative efforts.