Alltop répertorie de nombreux articles sur l'entrepreneuriat social à travers le monde.

27.01.2015 The TOMPSA’s Mobile Triage App

On the TED Blog, Karen Eng highlights the work of Mohammed Dalwai:
Every day, emergency room workers use triage to prioritize patient care — but exhausted personnel in under-resourced hospitals can easily make deadly errors in diagnostic tests and symptom scoring. South African emergency room doctor Mohammed Dalwai witnessed such avoidable tragedy firsthand while working with Médicins sans Frontières in Pakistan. He resolved never to let it happen again.

Dalwai urged MSF to apply a standard triaging system — the paper-based South African Triage Scale — in his emergency room in Pakistan. This led to an 86% improvement in successful triaging, and to MSF adopting this standard in emergency rooms around the world. It also led to a big idea for Dalwai. Now, with The Open Medicine Project (TOMPSA), he and his team have made an app that is freely available. They are planning to roll it out across many regions.

Here, Dalwai tells the TED Blog about the app’s development, and its possible future uses — including the ability to track realtime data of disease outbreak.
More here

27.01.2015 Intel at Maker Faire Africa 2014

Onsite in Johannesburg:
Check out what makers, designers and developers got up to at Maker Faire Africa held in Johannesburg in December 2014. From Hack-a-Thons, to 3D printing and rubric's cube machine solvers, it was all there...

27.01.2015 Wanda Organic : Biotechnology For Farmers In Kenya

Founded by Marion Moon, on Indiegogo:
Wanda Organic a Kenyan company that deals in the sale and manufacture of bio-organic fertilizer would like to raise 45,000 $ to improve the fertilizer distribution network in Machakos county. The money will be used to build 2 Wanda Dukas, that will serve as our village level fertiliser collection/drop-off points. By enhancing the accessibility of organic inputs for farmers, we can help reverse the negative ecological and social effects of unsustainable agricultural practices, mitigate climate change and improve the living standards of people in Machakos county, Kenya.

27.01.2015 Have No Fear, The B Corp Handbook is Here. B Storytelling Puts it to the Test.

(3BL Media and Just Means) - I’m a solopreneur and I want to belong. I want to belong to the B Corp movement where companies like Method, Etsy, WorkSquare, Suncommon and Green Mountain Power hang together. But what does it really take to join them? Does it make sense for me to spend the time working through a lengthy questionnaire, pay $500, form a Board of Advisers, organize an audit and track all of my impact? If I commit to all of this, will I have time to do my real job, as in provide content strategy and storytelling for the B Corp community?

For me, it’s a no-brainer. I’m joining the B Corp movement. I believe it formalizes “social enterprise” like no other model ever has before. I started B Storytelling—B as in B Corp—to help popularize the good things happening through the movement. I understand the unique B Corp story because I too, balance profit with mission. But I’m still in startup mode, so for now, everything on to-do list is an urgent priority; completing the B Lab Assessment has been pushed farther and farther down on my list. Until now. Why now? Because Ryan Honeyman’s B Corp Handbook has helped soothe my fears. I hope I can file for “pending B Corp status” (B Lab now offers “Pending Status” for startups) soon. So, for the next few weeks, I’ll be putting Honeyman’s tips to the test. I’ll share my own journey through the B Lab Assessment so that hopefully, yours can be a little easier. 

Before You Begin.

The B Corp Handbook Tip:
Do a trial run of the B Lab Assessment and block off around 90 minutes. 

My Experience:

Block off four hours. When I took the assessment the first time, it took me around three and a half hours. I found it almost impossible to view the first attempt as a trial run. For one, some of the language threw me off. It made me question whether or not, for example, I should implement a way in which to track the outputs of my suppliers and subcontractors (question EN4.1a) or what it means for a one-person startup to have a written consumer policy (question GV5.6). In the B Corp Handbook, Honeyman encourages you to skip questions you don’t know, but I found that be challenging because, well, then I just have to come back them later.

I found myself reading questions such as this one in the governance section: “Are there key performance indicators (KPIs) or metrics that your company tracks on at least an annual basis to determine if you are meeting your social or environmental objectives? (question GV2.9) and spending time thinking, “No, I’m not, but does this question mean, I should be? And, how do I do that as a one-woman show?”  If you can force yourself to think of your first attempt at the B Lab as a trial run per Honeyman’s suggestion, you might not get as hung up as I did.

The Assessment

Thankfully, B Lab has customized the assessment to fit the needs of start ups and one-person businesses. For B Storytelling, the assessment began with Governance, specifically Community Accountability. I flew through the first two questions. Yes, we have a corporate mission statement. I got hung up on question three (GV2.4a): Does the Board of Directors or other governing body review the company's social and environmental performance on at least an annual basis to determine if you are meeting your social or environmental objectives?

No, it doesn't, but it sounds like it’s probably a good idea. The next question is a follow-up to the previous one: Are there key performance indicators (KPIs) or metrics that your company tracks on at least an annual basis to determine if you are meeting your social or environmental objectives?

Again, a great question, but how in the world does a one-person company set and track metrics around social and environmental objectives? Of course, B Storytelling wants to do this, but what does this look like for me in everyday practice? As a service-based company, B Storytelling’s biggest environmental output is probably the energy used by the office space. Our environmental objectives are to stay paperless, always use co-working office space and live within a bikeable distance from the office. Right now, I’m accomplishing all three goals, but I’ve never set metrics around them.

The B Corp Handbook Tip:

Conduct an environmental audit of your energy, water and waste efficiency and make the results transparent to the public. Honeyman affirms that small companies will concentrate on paper, water and energy use. He recommends starting with energy efficiency and suggests benchmarking office space with the free Energy Star Portfolio Manager software. 

I downloaded the Energy Star Portfolio Manager Quick Start Guide. At first glance, it looks like an easy to use tool, but I’m still not sure how I would measure the efficiency of my co-working space. Along with four other women solopreneurs, I currently rent daytime space at The Blind Monk, a wine bar during the day. And they rent space from a larger condo building, the Whitney. According to the B Lab Assessment, is B Storytelling responsible for the environmental outputs of The Blind Monk and the impact of the Whitney?  I think so! It’s both a challenge and an opportunity. It’s a time challenge for me for sure, but it definitely presents B Storytelling with the opportunity to connect and work with local business owners to improve their environmental impact. I better make some time to begin these conversations!

The Plan

The B Corp Handbook Tip: Week 1: Get a Baseline

Honeyman suggests mapping out a six-week timeline for your assessment process, beginning with understanding your baseline of environmental and social impact. I think, for a solopreneur, this might look more like a 12 to 15 week timeline. I know at least for B Storytelling it is.

I was relieved to read Honeyman’s baseline encouragement. A starting score of 40 to 60 is average, he says. (80 out of 200 is the minimum score required for certification). B Storytelling is currently at a baseline of 55. I know we have a ways to go, but we are on our way.

My Tip: Read Chapter 4, The Quick Start Guide of The B Corp Handbook first. It gives you a game plan for the journey you’re about to take. It’s been helpful as I build the assessment into B Storytelling’s strategies.

Next Time.

This is one of four pieces I’ll write about my B Corp journey as the founder of a startup and as a solopreneur. (I promise they won’t all be this long!) So far, the B Lab Assessment has helped me to understand what it means to measure our environmental impact. It’s already shaping B Storytelling’s values and business strategies and is opening doors for conversations with other business leaders about sustainability in South Florida. Honeyman is right. This journey takes a solopreneur out of their silo experience and into a much larger, much more exciting community.

Order The B Corp Handbook. Start your Assessment. Track your environmental impact with Energy Star’s Benchmarking Starter Kit.


Tuesday, January 27, 2015 - 10:00am

27.01.2015 Global Ideas News Brief: Food for a growing African economy


Food security

Africa’s Economy Is Rising. Now What Happens to Its Food?
Over the last decade, Africa’s per capita income has grown at a rate nearly identical to that of the rest of the world.

Internet access

Indonesia’s Crazy Income Gap Has a New Enemy: The Internet
The gap between Indonesia’s rich and poor is wider than in any other developing country, climbing a staggering 60 percent over the last ten years.

Global development

Is development becoming a toxic term?
The Guardian
Development used to be a battle against deprivation and dependence. Nowadays, it’s more about supporting the liberalization of markets

Bold but Flexible: How to Effectively Share Your Vision
Stanford Social Innovation Review
Creating change requires that organizations effectively communicate their vision in a way that draws in both existing allies and "unusual suspects."

The Gates Global Citizen List: Open Field Or Fortress?
On the surface it seems like a great idea and the latest example of leveraging one of the world’s great fortunes for the benefit of the broad social sector.


Meant to Keep Malaria Out, Mosquito Nets Are Used to Haul Fish In
Out here on the endless swamps, a harsh truth has been passed down from generation to generation: There is no fear but the fear of hunger.

Alternative energy

The carbon that's killing India, and how California can help
LA Times
This week, President Obama is the chief guest of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at India's Republic Day celebrations. At the close of the historic visit, the two leaders are expected to announce cooperation on a suite of climate and clean energy measures, with the ultimate goal of reining in India's rapidly rising carbon dioxide emissions.

Youth employment

Discord or Dynamism? Getting the Arab World's Youth Employment Question Right
Huffington Post
Over 42 percent of young Tunisians are unemployed and, across the Middle East & North Africa (MENA), more than one in four youth is locked out of the labor market.

World Economy Needs 280 Million Jobs in Next Five Years, ILO Says
Wall Street Journal
The world economy will need to generate nearly 280 million new jobs between now and the end of 2019 to make up ground lost during the last recession and ensure new labor market entrants can find work.

Articles You Might Like: 
U.S. food safety overhaul threatens global farmers
Doing development better by thinking like a designer
Ending malaria: How genetically modified mosquitos could unlock Africa's wealth

27.01.2015 A Layaway Model from myAgro

myAgro's contention:
We believe the solution is helping farmers invest their own money in their fields and our vendor network + mobile layaway system + technical trainings helps farmers invest in their fields, increase their harvests and take significant steps out of poverty.

We believe that by offering a layaway model that’s convenient, transparent and trustworthy that farmers will not only invest in their fields, but they will also increase their investments each year. The average 2nd year farmer saved an additional 27% and cultivated 12% more land with myAgro. This is how we can incentivize farmers to move beyond subsistence farming to grow for larger regional markets and THAT’s how we’re going to help farmers move out poverty.

27.01.2015 SecureID Nigeria

An ITworld report:
Responding to banks’ efforts to reach out to people who do not typically use financial services, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan this week inaugurated the first Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) certified smart card manufacturing plant in sub-Saharan Africa.

The plant, built by Nigeria-based SecureID, will be based in the country's commercial capital, Lagos, and produce mostly payment cards such as credit, debit and prepaid or personalized card services with various combinations of functions including payment (Visa/MasterCard/Verve), photo identification, Mifare contactless access control and biometric match-on cards. It is fully Nigerian-owned and 95 percent of its staff will be composed of local workers. The plant will have annual production capacity for 200 million cards.

Smart cards or cards with embedded chips are key to our digital existence,” according to a statement from Jonathan. “Consider the everyday uses to which we put various SIM cards, biometric identity cards, and debit and credit cards used in the finance industry. Increasingly, they are becoming part of our personal and corporate staple.”
More here

26.01.2015 “Social” Shines at Sundance

Snow-covered mountains, celebrities, and long lines in the streets of Park City can only mean one thing: the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. The Skoll-Sundance partnership is a natural one. The Skoll Foundation has a long history of storytelling about entrepreneurial solutions to some of the world’s thorniest problems. Sundance has a long history of cultivating […]

26.01.2015 Life is a long experiment that includes successes and failures

At the beginning of this year, 47% of Americans made a New Year’s resolution. Only 8% of us will keep it. But maybe that isn’t a bad thing as long as we:
  1. Take the time to reflect on why we didn’t keep it.
  2. Look at it as one “experiment” in a long process.
Last weekend, I saw two movies, Birdman and Particle Fever, that portrayed very different attitudes towards success and failure. Without giving too much away about each movie, in Birdman, the former star of a comic book hero movie franchise tries desperately to regain his former success by writing, directing and starring in his adaptation of a Raymond Carver play.

He tells his daughter, “I’m trying to do something important,” to which she responds, “You’re doing this because you’re scared to death, like the rest of us, that you don’t matter.” Throughout the film, it feels like he is running from his failures in the past, and possible failures in the future.

Particle Fever is a documentary about the  launch of the Large Hadron Collider and the search for the Higgs Boson (aka the “god particle”), which some of the scientists interviewed have been working on for 20+ years!  I was struck by how different the attitude, as expressed by one of the physicists in the film, Savas Dimopoulos, was to failure:
“Jumping from failure to failure with undiminished enthusiasm is the big secret to success.”
Failure seemed to be an accepted part of the process, and a looooooooong process at that. As another physicist, Monica Dunford, says in a voice-over during footage of her going for a run:
“When you’re dealing with something that’s a long term project . . . you can’t think about the end. Ever. If you start off a marathon thinking ‘I can’t wait to get to the finish line. I’m going to have my data,’ or ‘I’m going to have my crispy french fries at the finish line’ or whatever motives you. If you start thinking that at mile one and it’s like ten minutes into the race and you’re thinking to yourself, ‘Wow, I’m only at mile one, I’ve got 22.5 miles to go.’ If you’re thinking like that at the start, then you’re done. Mentally you are done. This is what doing discovery physics means. This is what discovery means.”

I’ve thought about both films a lot recently and wondered: As I make future plans in reaction to past failures, am I being more like the actor in Birdman, or like the scientists in Particle Fever?

I have to admit that I have been being more like the actor in Birdman, running from failures and taking desperate actions in the hopes that future success would bury the memory of my failures, rather than embracing life as a long experiment that includes successes and failures.

So, I’m hoping to spend some time at the end of this month reflecting on some of my most recent failures with a “scientific method” type of lense:

  • Question: What question about my life was I trying to answer?
  • Hypothesis: What did I think the solution would be?
  • Experiment: What actions did I take to try to make happen what I wanted to happen?
  • Data: What are the facts about what happened?
  • Observations: What other things did I notice and feel about what happened?
  • Conclusion: Did I achieve my hoped for solution? Why or why not? If I didn’t, what did I learn and what will I do differently next time?

As we wind down the first month of 2015:

  • What hasn’t turned out the way you expected?
  • What will be your next experiment?

26.01.2015 Transport facility for Special Children

project picture
$25 — Transport facility for Special Children
$50 — Transport facility for Special Children
$100 — Transport facility for Special Children

give now

Balajothi's objectives are to meet all the needs of the disabled children including rehabilitation, therapy & training, special education, learning Aids, learning material, nutrition and transportation. The importance of a safe transportation cannot be over-stressed, especially for these special children. We provide transportation from home to school to all children, which not only ensures the safety during the transit but also acts as a reason for parents to send the children to school.

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
The transport being used currently is a Maruti OMNI van, which is modified to accommodate 8 children. It is 7 years old and has clocked over a 100,000 kms. It has broken-down couple of times in the last year and is turning out to be unreliable. Also, the modification to accommodate 8 children is not safe for these special children especially as they travel for around 10 kms each day.

This project intends to raise funds for a new vehicle, which would be a safer and a more reliable mode of transportation for the children. We have identified a vehicle that is: - easy to use by disabled children, is less maintenance and has a lesser running cost, easy to handle on narrow roads, has less road tax and insurance and takes less parking space.

Potential Long Term Impact
As the transport ensures children's attendance at the school, children are benefited from the learning activities, physiotherapy, food and nutrition thus helping every disabled child to become self reliant.

Project Sponsor: Balajothi Centre for the Disabled
Theme: Children | Location: India
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$22,491
Project #19561 on

26.01.2015 Warm-Winter Package for Community Senior Citizens

project picture
$10 — 1 new-year gift
$20 — 1 professional health examination
$47 — 1 professional health examination, 1 professional service plan design, 8-hour integrated home care services, 1-year-free hot-line service, and 1 new-year gift

give now

100 Warm-Winter Packages for 100 community senior citizens. Each package includes: 1 professional health examination, 1 professional service plan design, 8-hour integrated home care services, 1-year-free hot-line service, and 1 new-year gift. 100 packages will be delivered by the Leling, a Non-Profit Organization providing professional community care services for the elderly people with disabilities in poor families.

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
Along with the aging society, the number of aged people with disability is estimated to be 33 million persons in China, which accounts for 19% of the total 169 million of the aged population. Health care for the disabled elderly people is not covered by social security system, and is a urgent demand.

Leling is providing community services as a Non-Profit Organization, using donations in visiting services for the poor elderly people with disabilities.

Potential Long Term Impact
Trying to find a proper Chinese way to nursing the elderly at home and in community. In 2010, the population over age of 60 was 169 million in China, and the increase rate is 1 million per year.

Project Sponsor: Leling elderly social work service center
Theme: Health | Location: China
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$10,000
Project #19558 on

26.01.2015 emergency help to victims of heavy rains

project picture
$10 — Will provide 20 metres plastic sheet for one house.
$25 — Will provide one 50 kgs of corn flour, 10 kgs peas
$50 — Will provide 5 plastic buckets and 10 plastic cups.

give now

This project is shall be overruled by The Chinseu Community Based Organization but there is a special committee that is set to look for the help received and where it shall be distributed (logistic committee). This committee is comprising of different members of the societies like Member from the office of the Ward Councilor, Area development committee, Village development committee, Representative from the religious group and chaired by the Chinseu CBO - Disaster Program Officer.

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
The non stop raining for four days has caused lots of damages, peoples houses, some people killed after the walls of their houses fall on them, five children orphans died as the walls of the Organization falls on them as they were waiting to receive their daily meal at the Chinseu Orphanage, 18 children were seriously, animals died, crops washed away due to heavy running water, the activities that are undertaken at the Organization will again stay sustained.

This project will solve this problem hence it will help all the victims of this disaster will relief and domestic support such as giving them plastic buckets, plates , blankets, plastic sheets for roofing/ shelters and this project will give hope to these victimised people to go back to their previous premises and build another home.

Potential Long Term Impact
This project will help the beneficiaries build strong houses that in the future they shall stay without worries upon their buildings to fall down due to heavy wetness caused by continuance raining. *173 families are affected, their crops are washwd away, some animals die,houses fallen down. * 68 children that are cared and supported at Chinseu CBO are also affected as the room they used as the under five pre school learning room was inside the CBO's office block and the walls has fallen.

Project Sponsor: Chinseu Community Based Organisation
Theme: Disaster Recovery | Location: Malawi
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$55,000
Project #19555 on

26.01.2015 Bold in Action: Transforming Sneakers into Futures

“I thought, if we could make a sneaker that kids could customize by programming it, that’s something I knew my kids would love to do."

Meet 2013 Fellow Momo Akade: As a Black Male Achievement Fellow, Momo is doing something others have neglected—meeting kids where they are and getting them excited about skills that will help them meet their full potential.

As a global organization working with social entrepreneurs driving change, we are inspired to take today and the upcoming Black History Month to spotlight our Black Male Achievement Fellows working to improve the life outcomes of black men and boys here in the United States.

This video is part of a weekly series of portraits of Echoing Green Fellows. Learn about their organizations, their moments of obligation, and how Echoing Green supports their work, on our YouTube channel.

Related Posts 

Bold in Action: Hacking Isolation

"Hacking is about exploring the limits of what's possible." Go »

Summer Friday: Innovations for Leadership

Throughout our twenty-fifth anniversary year, we've been exploring the connections between the pioneering work of our earliest Fellows and the newest innovations of our 2013 class. Go »

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26.01.2015 The day Bill Gates drank poo (sort of)


Bill Gates’ latest adventure put the spotlight on one the world’s least sexy problems. What to do with with human poo? His answer: The Omniprocessor.

The Omniprocessor… No, it’s not a new type of high-powered computer or an upcoming robotic Hollywood superhero -- but it’s still pretty impressive. The self-contained treatment system collects human waste and, using it as fuel, creates vital resources: water and electricity. The Omniprocessor not only reduces dangerous fecal contamination of groundwater, but creates sparkling clean drinking water and electricity in the process--drastically needed resources in many developing areas.

Check out Gates sharing the results with Jimmy Fallon:

The Gates Foundation is getting ready to fund its first pilot program in Senegal -- and Bill Gates himself recently tasted the fruits of the project in Seattle. “The water tasted as good as any I’ve had out of a bottle,” he described on his blog. “And having studied the engineering behind it, I would happily drink it every day. It’s that safe.”

Developed by Janicki Bioenergy, an engineering firm based near Seattle, The Gates Foundation is funding the project’s development. They eventually want to make the system cheap enough that entrepreneurs in developing countries can invest in it. Once operating, the Omniprocessor could create a sustainable source of profit by offering the sewer services and then selling excess electricity and fresh water, boosting local economies while improving health and access to a source of dependable electricity.

“Waste contaminates drinking water for millions of people, with horrific consequences… If we can develop safe, affordable ways to get rid of human waste, we can prevent many of those deaths and help more children grow up healthy.”
-Bill Gates

While the Gates Foundation lauds the project as an impressive poverty-fighting tool and is working to promote private, local investment in the project, it brings up an interesting argument: Should private investors control access to life-sustaining commodities like water? Or would this revolutionary project be better implemented by governments?

Privatization of vital things like water, electricity and water treatment is a sorely debated issue, and no clear answer exists. However, there are convincing arguments on both sides of the public-vs.-private table:

Pros of privatization: By allowing private companies to control these resources, projects like the Omniprocessor can work from the ground up in a local community rather than top-down from a government, adapting to meet the specific needs of each location. Risk is also absorbed by private investors rather than financially-strapped governments, potentially minimizing loss in the case of failure. Additionally, entrepreneurs have personal incentive to succeed -- boosting efficiency and profitability.

Cons of privatization: One of the biggest risks of privatization is that it puts life-saving resources in the hands of profit-seeking organizations. When handled irresponsibly, this makes local residents -- who already struggle in the tight grip of poverty -- vulnerable to everything from exorbitant pricing to unstable supplies.

Pros of government control: Under the umbrella of government administration, more parties are responsible for the success of a project, so a greater diversity of considerations may take place before dollars are sunk into a new project. Because governments can use taxes as a source of revenue, systems can also be implemented at lower cost to end users. Also, making money is no longer the end goal, protecting locals from the dangers of greedy profit-seekers.

Cons of government control: Individuals aren’t making a profit, so there’s less personal incentive to maximize the value and efficiency of each system. Governments also move much slower than smaller, private groups -- threatening the viability of the system once installed and discouraging installation in the first place. Also, particularly in some developing nations, governments may function poorly and be fraught with corruption. Finally, governments are traditionally more risk-averse than private groups -- groundbreaking projects with potentially incredible outcomes may be overlooked in favor of safer, predictable projects.

Bill Gates believes putting local entrepreneurs in charge of the plants will harness privatization’s benefits and produce serious change, and maybe a few governments, too. And he’s confident enough to put his money where his mouth is.

Read about the Omniprocessor’s pilot program in Senegal, or get an earful from the many online debate forums discussing the risks and opportunities of privatization.

Articles You Might Like: 
Profiting from poop: How selling human waste could revolutionize sanitation
Disruptive sanitation: Can 3-wheeled carts and better septic tanks clean up Jakarta?
Nigeria uses mobile phones to fight corruption in farm subsidies

23.01.2015 Mercy Corps CEO tells a tale of two worlds at the World Economic Forum


By Mercy Corps CEO Neal Keny Guyer, originally published on the World Economic Forum blog.

Despite the stories of crises, calamities and contagion, the world is better off today than at any time in human history....Unquestionably, the world is less afflicted with conflict and related deaths, enjoys greater prosperity and life expectancy, and is more connected by trade, commerce and technology than ever before.

"However, there is another story unfolding – one that is sobering, potentially ominous and threatens global progress. This is a tale of weak global governance and the limitations of institutions to solve big problems; fragmented and increasingly competitive concentrations of political and economic power; clustering of extreme poverty in fragile states; and an unprecedented number of complex humanitarian crises resulting in more people displaced by violence than any time since World War II. The global humanitarian system is clearly overwhelmed."

"If the big issues of our times are instability, inequality and non-sustainability, then the narrative of human progress is facing increasing peril. Nowhere is this truer than in “fragile” contexts and countries trapped at the intersection of extreme poverty, conflict and weak governance. And while fragile countries are a minority, we cannot truly celebrate global progress until we see notable changes in these strongholds of fragility."

"We stand today at a historical inflection point: one that requires not only courageous leadership, but bold coordinated action to channel the power of markets and the private sector, in combination with the reach, wherewithal and influence of governments, multilateral organizations and civil society. There are no panaceas, fast fixes or shiny solutions to solve fragility and build resilience. However, Mercy Corps’ experience in the world’s toughest places provides some insight into opportunities for collective impact."

Read the full editorial on the World Economic Forum blog.

22.01.2015 TFCH improves Maternal health in Nigeria with Solar Delivery Lights from Maternova, Inc.

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Knowing the electricity challenges in our rural communities, women in labor and the midwives finds it very difficult during delivery of the newborn.

Its been a trend that pregnant mothers are mandated to buy “Candles” as part of the listed items for delivery. The candle of course provides light in case labor comes at night. Where the mother is not able to buy the candle, the local lights known as “npanaka” used mainly by rural dwellers which produces dangerous fumes that causes carbon monoxide poisoning are regularly used. This local lights is known to be very dangerous to the health of the newborn , mother and health worker.

My fellow midwives and I have conducted many deliveries at night using all these which has many times engendered our health in the course of saving lives. we have complained and no one listened to us. You can imaging a health worker with history of asthma working with the candle and local lights? your guess is as good as mine.

As young minds we have searched and decided to create and look out for innovations that can remedy this situation, and has eventually found one.

We came across this noble innovation that replaces the suffering of health workers , mothers and newborn. Today we have a SOLAR CLIP DELIVERY LIGHTS with Visors. In partnership with our very own “Maternova” an organization that is using technologies to improve women health across the world.

We have again made our rural midwives to be more confident in their work especially at night, We have also lifted away the burden and cost of candle lights from our mothers, we have again saved our people from the dangers of fumes from the local lights.

So far we have supported in getting this solar lights in more than two hundred (200) rural facilities and as well helping other government agencies get across to their health workers.
More details and success stories will be posted. My team and I are as happy as ever to save lives.

You can be part of our work. We are to make this change in Nigeria possible
Mind you corruption did not start today, but you and i can wipe it off.

To learn more about Traffina Foundation's amazing work, please visit them online at:

21.01.2015 10 Trends for 2015: Reimagining a "Future-Fit" Workplace

An increasing number of workplaces are embracing future fit practices including flexible working and benefits for employees. © iStockphoto

For over 25 years, companies have valued our ability to serve as their early warning system—to interpret emerging issues and trends in the sustainable development agenda and help them anticipate, understand, and respond to shifts in the business landscape. Our Ten Trends for 2015 series distills SustainAbility’s thinking over the past year and forecasts the issues that will shape the sustainable development agenda in 2015. This is the first in our series of blogs expanding upon these trends.

Several developments last year—such as calls for banning zero-hours contracts in the UK, the escalation of the living wage issue in the US, UK, and parts of Asia, and initiatives by corporates to address root causes of inequality—have brought into sharper focus the question: What does the workplace—when it’s fit for the future—look like?

The reality of an ageing workforce in developed economies is profoundly shifting how businesses reconfigure working practices and accommodate a multi-generational workforce. McDonald’s has warned that Europe faces a future of stunted growth unless employers take measures to bring young people and older workers into the labour force. Several companies that have focused on adapting their business practices to accommodate older workers are seeing financial returns and productivity gains. For example, since retailer B&Q began actively recruiting store clerks over the age of 50, its staff turnover is six times lower, while short-term absenteeism has decreased by 39%. Unilever UK estimates that it gains six euros in productivity for every one euro spent on a wellness program designed to prolong the working life of its older employees.

In the UK, zero-hours contracts have been receiving attention with regard to hiring young workers. Zero-hours contracts are controversial as they allow employers to hire staff with no guarantee of work. In some zero-hours contracts, the individuals are obliged to accept work if offered, while in others they are not. Some zero-hours contracts also prevent the individual from working for other companies, even when the employer has no work to offer. Labour leader Ed Miliband likened the use of zero-hours contracts by retailer Sports Direct to “Victorian” working practices and UK Business Secretary announced plans to ban exclusivity clauses in zero-hours contracts providing workers more flexibility.

Living wage remains a live topic with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signing an executive order. The order expands on the current Living Wage law that increases the living wage for workers who do not receive benefits including retailers, fast-food restaurants, and construction contractors. Over 1,000 companies in the UK are now committed to paying the living wage or above, in part due to mounting pressure from campaigning organisations.

Several initiatives by companies and governments last year reflected a shift in approach to employee wellbeing and responded to the increasingly changing needs of a diverse and multi-generational workforce. Starbucks announced that it would provide funding for employees to receive college education. Subsequently it announced upgrading its scheduling software to enable managers to make more consistent work shifts that account for family-friendly schedules. Malaysia is offering tax incentives to companies that establish nurseries and allow for flexible working hours, thus enabling mothers to join and remain in the workforce.

Looking ahead to 2015, the General Election in the UK will bring greater attention to zero-hours contracts and living wage. However, businesses recognise that addressing wage disparity is only part of the puzzle when considering employee wellbeing and engagement. Workplaces that are fit for the future will identify the broader drivers of wellbeing for employees such as flexible working hours and schedules, terms of contracts that are beneficial for both employers and employees, and adaptability to employees working until later age.

21.01.2015 Best SEO Tools to Audit Your Website for Free

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

Just last week, I wrote about the reasons you want to hire an SEO expert to help with your SEO instead of doing it yourself. While I stand by that set of recommendations, sometimes you just need to get a quick answer about the state of your website’s SEO health. Some of you may opt to go it alone due… read more →

The post Best SEO Tools to Audit Your Website for Free appeared first on Return On Now.

21.01.2015 Marketing to the world’s poorest: How social impact and profit can go hand in hand


Ted London wants to shake up business-as-usual in some of the world’s poorest places.

“We’ve moved past the question of whether businesses should serve the poor,” says London, a professor at University of Michigan and one of the first to champion the potential at the so-called 'base of the economic pyramid.' “They already do. The question is how can they serve them better. That’s where we’re trying to make an impact.”

The base of the pyramid, or the BoP as economists call it, includes the 4 billion people who each have a per capita income of less than $3,000 a year. Although this population may not be in the market for a beach house or a Ferrari, its sheer size offers economic possibilities still relatively untouched by business.

Since the mid-1990s, social enterprises have attempted to pair profit and social impact, but traditional industry has had marginal success. The stereotypes that accompany the BoP, such as the lack of purchasing power parity in developing countries, have made it less enticing. So how can companies be convinced of the enormous opportunity that marketing to the BoP represents?

London, who heads the William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan, helped launch the "BoP Roadmap" in October, including a set of guidelines for companies looking to invest in this portion of the market.

The guidelines cover a wide variety of issues, from creating global training networks to providing guidance on global impact assessments, each working to support BoP enterprises more effectively.

Global Envision caught up with London to get a closer look at what this tool means for the future of social enterprise.

Global Envision: In 2013, the University of Michigan hosted the first BoP Summit. How did this event influence creating the roadmap?

Ted London: The idea was to create a forum where we could talk openly about both our successes and challenges. What do we still need to figure out to get to where we need to be in the next five to 10 years?

If you go to an event and you hear someone talking about “inclusive enterprise” or “pro-poor business,” you generally only hear about how great things are going. And what we were seeing was enterprises starting to make the same mistakes that had been made years before. People weren’t really learning and there wasn’t a sense of development.

What we promised at the summit was that we would deliver a roadmap that integrated what we heard and other feedback we got as we began to put this together. So in the months following the summit, we combined the findings of the conference with other voices we felt had relevant contributions. That information culminated in the release of the Roadmap this past October.

GE: How does the BoP Roadmap define a social enterprise?

TL: There’s a large spectrum of enterprises doing this -- social entrepreneurs, national companies, host countries, etc. And the way we think about it, a [social] enterprise is one that intends to be sustainable and scalable and explicitly plans to generate a net positive social impact. It’s not a by-product as much as it’s a part of the core strategy.

GE: How can social enterprises complement other development initiatives?

TL: Both approaches are good, but what I think is even more productive is when development money can support social enterprises to help make them more sustainable and scalable. It doesn’t mean grant-based, and that’s what impact investing is all about, right? Providing generally subsidized capital and other resources to development. And that’s the model we’re beginning to see more of. The scale is still heavily tipped towards grant-based approaches but it’s changing. If we’re going to aspire to serve 4 billion plus people over an extended period of time, we have to think about sustainability and scalability.

GE: The Roadmap emphasizes the need for greater collaboration between all the aforementioned involved parties: governments, enterprises, NGOs, etc. How do you see these partnerships evolving?

TL: To be honest, it goes beyond how they work together. What are all the pieces of the puzzle that need to be in place for enterprises to be successful? In the developed world, we spend a lot of money subsidizing enterprises, like the bailouts for the banks and the auto industry. We need to have a more holistic sense of what we need to support enterprises in an even more challenging context.

There’s a lot of thinking that needs to be done regarding how the development community can best facilitate enterprise development. It’s enterprises, the role of the development community. And it's what we call “mutual value creation.” We need to make sure that we’re actually alleviating poverty and generating social performance.

Most enterprises are good at understanding their financial performance but they’re not necessarily good at understanding their social performance. So how do we make it easier for them to understand their social performance? How do we more clearly help them understand the link between economic and social performance?

It’s a lot of trying to understand the social performance implications from many lenses. The last piece is that amid all this effort, how do we make sure it’s widely shared, so that we can make sure that the ideas and the new knowledge is provided in a way that’s really helpful.

That’s the real idea behind the Roadmap. We’re still going to invest in today’s enterprises, but we also need to think about tomorrow. That’s a difficult thing to do when everyone is managing for today.

GE: How do you make investments in the BoP domain attractive to companies?

TL: There are different motivations for companies, but there has to be an ability to create value for them and usually it’s about growth. If you look at the developed world, it’s going to grow between 2 to 3 percent a year on average in the foreseeable future. So where are the new market opportunities? If nothing else, the size of the BoP population is something of interest. Also, there are all kinds of other benefits.

There are arguments that innovations in the base of the pyramid can move up-market and be positively disruptive. For example, experimentation and product development at the base of the pyramid can enhance companies’ abilities to serve the top of the pyramid. 

The big idea is that there’s a greater role for business in addressing questions of social impact, poverty alleviation and development. And it’s not about CSR [corporate social responsibility] or other initiatives that respond to pressure. This is more about creating enterprises that have a strategy and a value proposition that, to a large extent, also generate significant social impact. And the enterprises themselves are designed to be sustainable and scalable.

This is about building enterprises that specifically target the base of the pyramid as consumers, producers, entrepreneurs and employees.

To check out the BoP roadmap click here. Thanks to the William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan and

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21.01.2015 Thank You: (RED) has raised $300 MM to fight for an AIDS FREE GENERATION.

INC(RED)IBLE news to kick-off 2015.

Thanks to (RED) partners, friends and events, (RED) has now raised $300 million to fight AIDS. 100% of this money goes to work on the ground in 8 African countries — no overhead taken.

This news comes at the beginning of a critical year. 2015 marks the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals that were set in 2000.  This year, global leaders, NGOs, and the wider development community will consider a new set of goals for the next 15 years that would build a better world and a brighter future for all.

People like you — who buy, dance, tweet and shout about (RED) — generate ‘heat’ around the AIDS fight and it’s this heat that is critical in ensuring AIDS is a priority on the agenda.  Let’s keep it that way.

The first AIDS FREE GENERATION in over thirty years is within our grasp. Every day 650 babies are born with HIV. Together, we can get that number close to zero.

Thank you for raising $300 million to fight AIDS.

Here’s to a great 2015 for all. It’s going to be a big year!

20.01.2015 Global Ideas News Brief: Safer cities


Urban Centers

Fixing Fragile Cities: Solutions for Urban Violence and Poverty
Foreign Affairs
People around the world have been converging on cities for centuries, and more than half of them live in one today.


Cari Tuna and Dustin Moskovitz: Young Silicon Valley billionaires pioneer new approach to philanthropy
Washington Post
When Cari Tuna and her future husband, Dustin Moskovitz, a Facebook co-founder, decided they would give away most of their multibillion-dollar fortune to charity, they thought of asteroids.


Fueling Financial Innovation in the Middle East
Stanford Social Innovation Review
Getting social entrepreneurs in Arab countries to take bigger risks in financing for scale may require that they put more skin in the game.

Richest 1% to own more than rest of world, Oxfam says
The wealthiest 1 percent will soon own more than the rest of the world's population, according to a study by anti-poverty charity Oxfam.

Food security

805 million people go hungry. Who will uphold their right to food?
The Guardian
Countries are recognising their obligation to feed their citizens, but with growing corporate control over food systems, the battle is far from over

Food security: is it time to recognise the nutritional value of human waste?
The Guardian
Urine and feces contain precious nutrients that could fuel farming. Fortunately NGOs are getting over the yuck factor.


Guest post: India and China face huge education challenge
By 2030, the economies of India and China together may contribute 65 percent of global GDP and be home to the majority of the world’s working age population. India alone will possess the world’s biggest pool of potential employees.


Ebola kills far fewer than AIDS, TB and malaria. What should we prioritise?
The Guardian
How should we be approaching disease, asks Bjorn Lomborg? By tackling one illness at a time, or by working on the entire health system?

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19.01.2015 Investors Can Protect Microfinance Clients from Exploitation

Four years have passed since the launch of the Principles for Investors in Inclusive Finance, a compact signed by 40 global investors in the Netherlands. The introduction to these principles states: Inclusive finance carries with it the responsibility for all actors in the value chain – investors, retail financial service providers and other relevant stakeholders […]

19.01.2015 How A Global Corporation is Quietly Changing The World

Two billion people use Unilever products every day. Many would recognize the brands belonging to the 120-year-old company, like Dove, Popsicle or Vim, but few know the name Unilever and most have no idea of its incredibly bold – some would even say radical – approach to business. In 2009, in the throes of the […]

19.01.2015 Fighting to Change Mindsets and Behavior in Pakistan

I am Fiza Farhan, CEO of the Buksh Foundation and Director of Buksh Energy Private Limited. Recently I was selected for the 2015 Forbes 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneurs  list. I am ecstatic to be acknowledged for my efforts towards women’s empowerment and scaling up access to renewable energy in the underprivileged rural communities of […]