Published in over twenty countries, How to Change the World
has become the Bible for social entrepreneurship. It profiles men and women from around the world who have found innovative solutions to a wide variety of social and economic problems. Whether they work to deliver solar energy to Brazilian villagers, or improve access to college in the United States, social entrepreneurs offer pioneering solutions that change lives.
Discover surprising facts about social entrepreneurs from author David Bornstein
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- According to a recent Harris Poll, a whopping 97% of Generation Y are looking for work that allows them "to have an impact on the world."
- In recent years, courses or centers in social entrepreneurship have been created in over 250 universities and colleges such as Harvard Business School, Yale School of Management, Duke, NYU's Stern & Wagner, Wharton, Oxford, and Stanford.
- Teach for America received 25,000 applications for 3,700 slots in 2008, an increase of more than a third over 2007. In Ivy League schools such as Yale, Cornell, and Dartmouth, close to 10% of all graduates applied to the program.
- In the past two years, the Acumen Fund, an organization that supports social entrepreneurs who solve major problems through business solutions (eg. malaria nets, water purification, loans for housing), received more than 1,000 applications from top ranked business students for just 15 fellowship positions.
- The list of top business entrepreneurs who are focusing either full time or a considerable amount of time on social entrepreneurship is highly impressive:
- Pierre Omidyar, founder of ebay, created Omidyar Network to "enable individual self-empowerment on a global scale."
- Jeff Skoll, cofounder of ebay, also runs Participant Productions, which makes socially conscious films including An Inconvenient Truth and Goodnight and Good Luck.
- Bill Gates has left Microsoft to pursue a full-time career in philanthropy.
- Warren Buffett recently donated $30 billion to the Gates Foundation.
- William Draper, one of the biggest venture capitalists in Silicon Valley, created the Draper Richards Foundation to support social entrepreneurs.
- Klaus Schwab, the founder of the World Economic Forum (Davos), founded the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship.
- Sergey Brin and Larry Page, founders of Google, created Google.org, which supports social entrepreneurs and has raised over $1 billion.
- Legendary venture capitalist John Doerr is leading an effort to raise $100 million for microcredit loans.
- The Grameen Bank, the leading example for social entrepreneurs worldwide, received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006.
- The Bridgespan Group, a consulting group that advises social entrepreneurs, received 1,800 applications for 18 job openings in 2006.
From Publishers Weekly
Journalist Bornstein (The Price of a Dream: The Story of the Grameen Bank) profiles nine indomitable champions of social change who developed innovative ways to address needs they saw around them in places as distinct as Bombay, India; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and inner-city Washington, D.C. As these nine grew influential when their ingenious ideas proved ever more widely successful, they came to the attention of Ashoka, an organization that sponsors a fellows program to foster social innovation by finding so-called social entrepreneurs to support. As Bornstein interviewed these and many other Ashoka fellows, he saw patterns in the ways they fought to solve their specifically local problems. To demonstrate the commonality among experiences as diverse as a Hungarian mother striving to provide a fuller life for her handicapped son and a South African nurse starting a home-care system for AIDS patients, he presents useful unifying summaries of "four practices of innovative organizations" and "six qualities of successful social entrepreneurs." Bornstein implies that his subjects are in the tradition of Florence Nightingale and Gandhi; the inspiring portraits that emerge from his in-depth reporting on the environments in which individual programs evolved (whether in politically teeming India or amid the expansive grasslands of Brazil) certainly show these unstoppable entrepreneurs as extraordinarily savvy community development experts. In adding up the vast number of current nongovernmental organizations and their corps of agents of positive change, Bornstein aims to persuade that, "without a doubt, the past twenty years has produced more social entrepreneurs than terrorists.".
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