500,000 young people drop out of high school each year; they feel disengaged and uninspired; they fail to see how school is relevant in their lives. An educational program called Build makes it possible for low-income students, as part of their high school studies, to work in teams, conceiving, testing, and ultimately operating their own small businesses. In the process, they discover — often to their surprise — their potential to deal with unexpected problems, persist through failure, and create something that the world values.Read More
At a time when university students lack opportunities and financial help to test their innovative business ideas, the Resolution Project supports higher education students who have ideas for socially responsible businesses and charities. Resolution offers small awards to start businesses as well as mentor opportunities that enable networking and business collaboration with experts.Read More
The 2008 recession’s job losses spurred a development of a Do-It-Yourself economy. With the advent of Uber, Etsy, Airbnb, and others, the marketplace has become full of micro-entrepreneurs who thrive with independent web-assisted businesses.Read More
New crowdfunding options can help even the smallest donor's contributions to have a meaningful impact, bolstering a sense of personal involvement, maximizing knowledge about causes, and inspiring greater participation.Read More
Agencies across the corporate, government, and nonprofit sectors are recruiting ideas from the public by offering prizes for solving challenges. Prize incentives have spurred innovation for centuries, but fell out of favor as the preferred method in the 1800s. Now, prize-based incentives are back, in part because of a flood of new philanthropic money, and because prizes cast a wider net to a largely more educated and tech-savvy global population.Read More
A follow-up article on Husk Power Systems, which has created a scalable system to turn rice husks into electricity that is reliable, eco-friendly and affordable for families in India. The company bases their business model around local involvement, grassroots systems that cater to the immediate community, and continual accountability. This article fills in some information gaps from the initial piece, "Fixes: A Light in India."Read More
Two columns on microconsignment, a new variation on microcredit that helps poor people living in developing countries - particularly women in rural villages - start small social businesses without taking on debt or requiring previous business skills. The organization, Soluciones Comunitarias, partners with a non-profit and a university student program to manage the supply chain and other components of the business necessary to support the social entrepreneurs in successful micro-ventures.Read More
Many different people are inventing health devices for resource-poor settings, but some organizations - like M.I.T.’s Little Devices group - are empowering developing communities and increasing access to healthcare by building medical devices that nurses and doctors in very poor settings can adapt themselves — or kits for making their own, often harvesting parts from toys to cleverly rig up medical equipment. It’s part of a major idea shift, one that’s transforming the design of foreign aid.Read More
Access to electricity in India takes a huge economic, educational, and health-related toll. A small company called Husk Power Systems has created an innovative system that is turning rice husks into electricity and illuminating India’s poorest state.Read More
Programs to get fresh produce carts to areas with no access to healthy food work best when government and determined entrepreneurs team up. Success from this model is evident in New York City, where the city has incentivized the selling of fruits and vegetables by street vendors in areas that are in the most need of the produce.Read More
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