Skoll World Forum attendees talk in front of Solutions Insights Lab posters

Solutions Insights Lab

The Solutions Insights Lab is a targeted research and analysis service focused on identifying and interrogating what’s working and what’s not in a particular sector or field. It employs interviewing techniques drawn from the solutions journalism approach, but is not a work of journalism and is appropriately separated with a firewall from SJN’s core journalism work.

The Solutions Journalism Network is helping journalists and other media makers report on evidence-based responses to problems that many people assume are unsolvable. By exposing people to what's working, solutions reporting offers a more holistic, accurate view of the world, while building credible hope.

What happens when the journalistic principles of solutions journalism are applied in a non-journalistic system – in this case, social change? The Solutions Insights Lab, an initiative of SJN, uncovers insights, themes and patterns that can inspire and inform social change organizations. Working with notable organizations from around the globe, the Lab is a resource for social entrepreneurs, investors, nonprofits, NGOs and more. And it all starts with two questions: What's working? And what can we learn?


Solutions Insights Lab logo

The Solutions Insights Lab integrates the elements of the solutions framework into research on social change. These elements include:

The Response

Focuses on a response to a social problem — and on how that response has worked, or why it hasn’t.


Shows what can be learned from a response and why it matters.


Provides data or qualitative results that indicate effectiveness (or lack thereof).


Places responses in context; doesn’t shy away from revealing shortcomings.

Recent Projects

Leading social change organizations have enlisted the Lab to support the work of social entrepreneurs, funders, investors, policymakers, NGOs and more. Here are a few examples of what that looks like in practice.

A teacher helps a student with their work

‘What’s Working: Solving the World’s Most Pressing Problems’

With support from the Skoll Foundation, the Lab created “What’s Working,” a searchable portal that combines published solutions journalism and interviews with a wide array of leaders whose work has been supported by the Skoll Foundation over the past 20 years to uncover insights that can help address social problems around the world.

Circular photos show people embracing, swinging on a swing, and different city and natural landscapes

Future of Wellbeing

The Rockefeller Foundation is supporting a partnership between the Lab and the Wellbeing Economy Alliance to help find and connect people working to envision the future of the “wellbeing economy.” The idea of such an economy is one that prioritizes quality of life over the quality of the economy, offering a very different vision of progress.


A woman wearing eyeglasses smiles on a poster

Eyeglass Initiatives

The Livelihood Impact Fund engaged the Lab to study pilot initiatives working with community health care workers and pharmacies to deliver reading glasses to those in need. Our analysis has already uncovered insights that can help scale these efforts, with the eventual goal of enabling access to over 800 million people globally.

Ambika interviews community members in Bangladesh for the Eyeglass Initiatives project

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