Alltop

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

21.10.2014 Development Should Include Everyone

Inclusive development  is gaining momentum on the global agenda, but is the international development sector actually listening to its own advice? Inclusive development means ensuring that the benefits of economic growth and social progress reach a broad base, generating improvements in the lives of the most vulnerable. Whereas GDP growth was once the primary target […]

21.10.2014 Kailash Satyarthi: Social Entrepreneur and Engineer of Freedom

My long-time friend, colleague and mentor has just been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Kailash Satyarthi is a hero to many people, all of them certainly glad that this kind, original and tenacious man has at last received such recognition. As my career has been devoted to advancing and realizing his ideas, I want to […]

21.10.2014 Crossing Boundaries: How Diverse Educational Institutions are Collaborating for Impact

“All the interesting problems cross boundaries. Some straddle disciplines. Some require co-operation between business, government, academia and non-profit groups. So you have to train people to cross boundaries.” –David Ellwood, Dean, Harvard Kennedy School of Government This is a time of extraordinary innovation in education around the world, and higher education is no exception. Almost […]

21.10.2014 Cada Vida Creates Opportunities for Colombian Women

An estimated 60 percent of the world’s poor are women. Though organizations all over the globe are working to close this gender gap, women worldwide still face many challenges in accessing education, employment opportunities, and equal pay and job training. In Colombia, this feminization of poverty is compounded by a male-dominated family structure that impedes […]

21.10.2014 Webinar: Shattering Myths and Talking Trends in Youth Employment Innovations

Tune in to our G+ Hangout on November 4th at 8:00pm to discuss trends and myths in innovation for youth employment. Across Africa, as in the rest of the world, a faster pace in the workplace signals a drive towards a more creative talent pool that is not afraid to dabble in intrapreneurship and entrepreneurship. Many youth employment solutions incorporate skills training to unlock opportunities for the youth population.

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21.10.2014 Innovative Tech is Transforming Agriculture

(3BL Media and Just Means)- Farming and technology. Not words the average consumer associates with one another. But for Soli Ltd, an Israel-based, farm-tech and food export company that specializes in the breeding and cultivating of hybrid vegetable seeds, and Tian Leh Eco-Farm, a farm in China that focuses on producing high quality produce, farming and technology work hand-in-hand.

“Farm tech encompasses all parts of agriculture,” Issac Liebreich, Founder of Soli and expert ergonomist, told me. “For example, we use a computer system to control irrigation, climate, fog, lighting and pest control in our greenhouses.”

Farm technologies help produce higher yields and more importantly to Soli and Tian Leh Eco-Farm, higher quality. Open field crops can also incorporate farm technology systems and include virus resistant, seed hybrids, seed breeding and variety expansion.

“We are developing new varieties with new resistances to virus. If you want better resistance, you reduce the use of chemicals and breed varieties which can withstand the harm of insects and viruses,” Liebreich told me.

The goal of Soli’s work is to increase the global supply of high quality and sustainable produce. Liebreich sees the market for high quality produce rapidly expanding in China, and he thinks Tian Leh Eco-Farm is jumping into this market at the most opportune time.

“There is no limit for better quality in China. For the next 20 years, we see a huge growth opportunity. There’s an opportunity to make money, not to become rich, but established. And even more, there’s a huge need for high quality food distribution,” Liebreich told me in an interview.

Just as we have experienced a decline in varieties of fruits and vegetables in the United States, Liebreich described the same about China.

“Forty years ago, you’d see a big mess of tomatoes on the shelves: red, yellow, green. But today, all tomatoes are the same,” said Liebreich. 

This reason is why Founders of Tian Leh Eco-Farm and the married couple, Hui Wang and Luyao Li, are giving up their chance at the American dream, choosing to use their Masters degrees from Northeastern and MIT, respectively, to invest into China’s agricultural systems. Wang spent his childhood helping his parents on the family farm. He saw dozens of people abandon their family farms and head for factory jobs in the cities.

“The industrial revolution attracted families away from their farms and into the cities. There wasn’t enough money in small scale, family-operated agricultural to provide for a family so men and women left the fields and went to work in urban factories. Many farms became less-attended and desolate. Hui’s vision is to demonstrate that a new modal of farming practices, planned and operated by college graduates can be financially sustainable and support Earth’s natural systems too,” Li explained.

Tian Leh Eco-Farm’s tagline is “to return nature back to farming and farming back to people” and this influences every decision the farm makes. Wang incorporates practices of biomimicry into every activity. For example, the goats, corn, wheat, geese and fishery at Tian Leh form a mini-ecosystem with a virtuous cycle of converting waste of one species into food, energy and fertilizer for others

“By modeling natural systems, Tian Leh Eco-Farm restores and advances the land of Bengbu and provides easy access to sustainable food,” said Li. “Our mission is to stand as a model of high-tech, sustainable farming. We want to produce high quality food through sustainable farming practices in order to reconnect the Chinese, urban professional with their food and with nature. We also want to help others create a lifestyle of serenity, gratitude and connection to the Earth as our customers understand the food on their plates.”

Wang was the first person from his village of Bengbu to receive a Master’s degree - Wang trained as a mechanical engineer- and the first to study in the United States. His family worked hard to send him to college and never imagined he would return home…for farming. But Wang “felt called to his land” and today, he and Li are almost three years into turning devastated land into a nutrient-rich, highly-productive and diverse farm. Soon they plan to incorporate technology into their every day, farming activities.

Wang and Li recently visited Soli’s headquarters in Israel in order to better understand farm tech.  What they discovered is that many of Soli’s high quality produce breeds suit the Chinese palette and could bring large potential market opportunity if domesticated in the Chinese market.

“They have excellent soil, excellent water, and excellent conditions which is not an easy thing to find in China. It’s very unique,” said Liebreich.

Soli and Tian Leh Eco-Farm are currently exploring the possibility of partnership. They know have a lot to offer one another and are both seeking to grow supply and demand for sustainable produce in China. One seed at a time.

Read more about Soli Ltd and Tian Leh Eco-Farm.

 

 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 - 2:30pm

21.10.2014 Fiber-Mud and Solar Powered 3D printers

The field of 3D printing continues to evolve on a number of fronts from input materials:
A new Italian company is demonstrating a super-tall, portable machine that will bring 3D-printed dwellings to impoverished regions.

The project comes from the 3D printer company WASP, which demonstrated the technology at Maker Faire Rome. Their building-making printer, a gargantuan 20′ tall, three-armed delta machine, can be assembled on site in two hours, according to WASP CEO Massimo Moretti, then filled with native mud and fiber, and used to cheaply construct dwellings. He explains that this gives the ability to work more closely with natural forms rather than the square-shaped block homes that common brick dwellings are made from. He also passionately explains how this will help people express the power of their mind, rather than just of constructing something by hand...[more here]
...to power supply sources:
Quasi-portable Solar 3D Printer. The quasi-portable solar-powered RepRap on a cart meant for schools or small businesses. (Credit: Debbie King)
Open-source solar-powered 3D printers could bring 3D printing to remote areas, Joshua Pearce at Michigan Technological University has proposed.

One version features an array of solar photovoltaic panels and a stand-alone printer that could be stationed in a sunny schoolyard and print anything from consumer toys to science lab equipment.

The second system is smaller and fits in a suitcase, based on a RepRap 3D printer and can thus replicate itself and make parts for larger printers. And it can go almost anywhere...[continue reading]

21.10.2014 Palm Oil Processing from TELIOS Trading

In VC4Africa, a pitch from Olumuyiwa Akin-Ogundeji founder of TELIOS Trading.
There is a 250,000 MT/per annum shortfall in the supply of oil palm products in Nigeria. This shortfall is presently valued at $250 Million. Despite having sufficient land and farmers to meet this shortfall – it is not being met! Our intent as a social enterprise is to organise and lead small holder oil palm farmers in communities and villages across the oil palm producing region of Nigeria to fill this gap within the next decade, while transforming the socio-economic realities of these farmers and their communities.

Oil palm products include Technical/Special Palm oil , Palm kernel oil, Palm kernel cake and Palm kernel sludge. These products have a wide range of domestic, commercial and industrial food/non food uses and find a ready market domestically and internationally.

We need $250,000.00 to start this transformation with our first community mill and farmers association.

21.10.2014 Geekulcha

In South Africa:
Geekulcha is a vibrant young tech company which was founded and incubated at mLab. it has has two main models, the Business model and the community for ICT students
...Geekulcha also brings together ICT students, young ICT professionals and anyone who has an interest in ICT and Technology so they can share ideas, collaborate on projects and learn more about the industry and the latest trends and technologies. The tech community gets to interact, have discussions, debate on ICT related subjects and share their knowledge with each other. Our aim is to create a culture of Innovation, Creativity, Development and Entrepreneurship amongst our fellow youth, especially those doing ICT.

21.10.2014 United Africa Fruit Company

In West Africa:
The United Africa Fruit Company is a Ghanaian agribusiness engaged in improving the lives of small scale farmers across Africa by transforming the traditional relationship between small scale farmers and their Buyers.

Through the use of sustainable principles and the promotion of our equity sharing model, we endeavor to empower farmers by including them as formal stakeholders in the value added/chain process.

In sum, we aim to positively and measurably impact our farmers by providing an innovative structure for them to deliver the finest in quality agricultural products, through integrated farming, trading, and processing.

20.10.2014 Zoe Arden and Matt Loose to Present at Sustainable Brands London

SustainAbility Directors Zoe Arden and Matt Loose will present “Business Model Innovation: Redesigning Value Delivery and Unlocking New Benefits in the Process” at Sustainable Brands London on Monday, November 3 from 1:30pm – 4:30pm.

Prepare for a deep dive into emerging business model innovations that are disrupting industries while having significant positive social and/or environmental impacts. This workshop will break down 20 such innovative models in order to help attendees better understand their origins, mechanics and implications. From producing on demand, to rematerialization, to inclusive sourcing, to building entire new marketplaces, to differential pricing – this workshop will shed light on the latest insights on business model innovation for sustainability. This session is based on SustainAbility’s recently published report, Model Behavior: 20 Business Model Innovations for Sustainability.

About Sustainable Brands London

This year marks the third year Sustainable Brands is gathering in London. Dedicated business leaders from companies such as Unilever, Marks & Spencer, BASF, Heineken and others are planning to participate as well as thought leaders from Guardian Sustainable Business, Forum for the Future, SustainAbility and more. There is a conscious effort to bring unexpected participants together – large multinational corporations, start-ups, NGOs, academia, investors and government agencies – each bringing a unique perspective but shared passion for shifting the world to a sustainable economy. The Reimagine, Redesign, Regenerate theme prompts leaders to actively reimagine what’s possible when unlikely partners collaborate to build multi-stakeholder partnerships and formerly siloed conversations end up in the same room together.

Review the Sustainable Brands London program and receive a 20% discounted conference ticket when you register with SustainAbility’s promo code NWsaSB14L.

20.10.2014 Return On News: Penguins, Pandas, and Pirates, Oh My!

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

It has been quite a while since we’ve published a curated list of posts in our Return On News series. Since it has been a hot week or two for news items, I thought I’d pull one together today to help catch you up on all the latest developments. If you haven’t seen Return On News before, it is a… read more →

The post Return On News: Penguins, Pandas, and Pirates, Oh My! appeared first on Return On Now.

20.10.2014 Lovelace Day and Women Tech Leaders of the Future

Last week, the world celebrated Ada Lovelace Day. Most people have never heard of Lovelace and many still don’t know who she is. Yet, every time you turn on your computer, you owe her a debt. After years of languishing in obscurity (or being known solely as the daughter of the poet Lord Byron), Lovelace […]

20.10.2014 Spur On Stage Theatre

Led by Chibuike Kenechukwu, Spur On Stage aims to become an "African Broadway" described as...
...a company of multidisciplinary professionals engaging in media and entertainment projects with the intention to promote the performing arts as a platform for social reconstruction and wholesome family entertainment.

17.10.2014 Quit, Get Lost and Support the New Economy: Redefining Entrepreneurship

(3BL Media and Just Means) - It’s a new economy: slow living, locavores, new entrepreneurs, and community-based practitioners. The idea of what it means to be an entrepreneur and to start and grow a business is changing. According to Claire Wheeler, Vermont-based, MBA in Sustainability Alum from Marlboro Graduate College and Founder of Rework, a consultancy which supports local business owners to do the work they love, says that what our economy needs most is a bunch of quitters; entrepreneurs willing to pursue the change they want to make in the world, even if it means walking away from a cushy job.

“We're taught at a young age to go to work in exchange for the promise of security - a return on the precious investment of our smarts, skills and a whole lot of our time. We are told that if we put in our time now, someday we will retire, relax and enjoy life,” says Wheeler. “I realized that even though I had a good job and was doing good work, I didn’t feel good.”

The defining moment for Wheeler, when she knew she wanted to quit her job and commit to fostering her local economy in Montpelier, was her very first experience in her MBA program. Her professor, Beverly Winterscheid, Founder of Center for Nature and Leadership, instructed the class to hike a mountain, in total silence, in the middle of January. Her goal was for the class to “get lost.”

Wheeler wrote this about her experience in a recent blog post on Rework’s website:  “We were told to turn off our phones, left to retrieve some primordial skill of gauging the passing of time to know when to return to the parking lot. We didn’t have maps and even though the terrain was new to all of us, our professor was not the least bit concerned. Instead, she whispered the final words we’d hear all afternoon: ‘get lost.’”

The professor’s goal of this activity was for the students, as Wheeler puts it, “to let go of what we knew in order to find ourselves.” For Wheeler, “getting lost” was the beginning in a shift in her thinking about business and her role in it.  She knew she could use her MBA to support local artists and business owners in Vermont and intentionally join the “new economy.”  Rework, Wheeler’s consultancy firm, is designed to stay small. Their goal is to empower the local change makers, creative geniuses and community-based businesses through a variety of business solutions including project management, financial literacy, and work flow design, among others.

“I will never look back,” says Wheeler. “Today, I support a local midwifery practice with financial projections, project management and long-term business planning. I’ve helped a furniture maker streamline his accounting processes and a massage therapist create an online scheduling system. I love what I do because I'm eliminating the barriers, the small details of the day-to-day, so that the new economy can thrive.

Wheeler continues, “My passion is to support the success of these entrepreneurs by working with them on the parts of the business that they struggle with, that keep them up at night, that create stress, so that together we can transform that stress into solutions that work for them. Rework is about sitting down, identifying the challenge, and crafting creative solutions together that give clients less stress and more impact.”

Rework measures success in a new way too: growing in line with the needs the community and our clients; making strategic decisions which embody mutual support; and building a world which supports the flourishing of the earth and people, one business at a time. Notice that acquisition, expanding operations and making millions were not on this list. Wheeler wants Rework’s legacy to be about her community and not about building her own fortune. She continually reminds herself to “get lost.”

Wheeler writes in a recent blog post on Reworks’ website:

“By being willing to get lost, we give ourselves the opportunity to take a risk and reclaim our work. Individuals are quitting traditional employment to earn a living by offering their true gifts and following their passions. Non-profits are implementing enterprising models to sustain their missions. Businesses are adopting bottom-line strategies and multi-stakeholder operating models. This is not business as usual! This is a shift of consciousness, a new way of being.”

This is the new economy.

Thanks to Rework and to Claire for contributing pieces of their blog. Read it in its entirety and get inspired. Check out Claire’s MBA in Sustainability program at Marlboro Graduate College.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday, October 17, 2014 - 3:00pm

17.10.2014 Don't be shy. Run towards your big vision.


As I was walking to work one day this week, I saw this cute Corgi (pictured above) on the street. At first he was shy. He watched me with half of his face hidden behind the wall. But as I walked closer, his excitement overwhelmed him. He ran out of hiding to say hello and invited me to pet him (so soft!).

Sometimes that's how we are with our Big Visions. Shy at first. Testing the waters. Not wanting to make a commitment. But here's the important part. The excitement. When we get SO excited about something that we just HAVE to do it, or learn more about it, or share it with others, we need to let go and run towards it.

When you feel pulled towards something that makes you go "Oooooooh!" Move towards it. Get closer. See what it's all about. For example, I often take photos on my walks to and from work.


A color will catch my eye and compel me to take out my phone and look closer.


 Sometimes I decide that it doesn't look as great as I thought it would, and I keep walking.


Other times, halfway through editing it on Instagram, I'll decide that the image or moment isn't drawing me in anymore. I discard the edits and delete the photo.


But a lot of the time, if I stop to photograph something I feel inexplicably drawn to, the photo turns out even more beautifully than I could have imagined. And that makes me happy. Very happy.

Big Vision experiment: Move towards what excites you, attracts you, or draws you in this week.

All photos by me.

16.10.2014 When Blog Titles Go Bad: 9 Ways To Botch It

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

I absolutely love crafting and sharing blog posts. The power of the written word to inspire and engage is simply unmatched by nearly anything (aside from my other passion, musical performance). To get it right, you need to pick good blog titles that will drive clicks and views. As alluded to in a previous post, I spend a great deal… read more →

The post When Blog Titles Go Bad: 9 Ways To Botch It appeared first on Return On Now.

16.10.2014 Nonprofits and Cybersecurity

Today's New York Times reveals that the folks who hacked the website of JP Morgan Chase, one of the world's largest banks, also hacked the website and account of the bank's affiliated charity arm - the Chase Corporate Challenge.

In July, GoodWill Inc announced that hackers had accessed information on payments processed by the nonprofit employment program.

Waaaaay back in 2007 hackers breached the security systems at Convio Inc., gaining access to donor information for more than 90 charitable organizations.

Universities have long been, and in 2014 seemed to grow as, a target for cybersecurity breaches.

I'm sure that hospital systems, not-for-profit health care providers, non-profit financial firms, and even philanthropic foundations are also tempting targets.

Why does this matter? In the Chase Corporate Challenge case it appears that hackers were looking for a way into the bank via the nonprofit portal. (NYT says that didn't work. In this case.) In other cases the stash of information - on donors and their financial information - may be tempting enough on its own. For those with malicious means beyond financial interests, accessing information on program participants or program beneficiaries or activities planned may be enough - especially for organizations doing politically, religiously, or culturally sensitive work.

All of this steals the thunder from one of my intended Blueprint 2015 predictions, that hacking, cybersecurity and nonprofits would rise to public attention next year. (Just came on earlier than I thought). 

Cybersecurity and protecting the digital information that nonprofits collect and store is important on the organizational level. It's also important on a systems level. Collectively, given the capacity constraints for most nonprofits and the linked nature of digital data, information breaches from individual organizations can serve as open doors to breaches across organizations and whole sectors. The limited ability of nonprofits to protect information they gather online - even when they outsource the service to third party vendors (who struggle to stay in front of malicious hackers) - makes not just the nonprofits and foundations vulnerable but also their affiliates and partners.

security experts can will tell you what to do to protect your web and digital assets. I think about this more from the programmatic and human side. Too often I see foundations and nonprofits choosing to collect information from people just because they can. It's easy to ask for addresses, phone numbers and email addresses, even when you don't need them and may not know why you would use them. It's easy (and cheap) to store that information somewhere online. And it's easy to forget about it.

We need to shift our organizational mindsets about collecting information from those we serve. We should stop  thinking about information collection as an "all you can eat buffet," where the ease, speed and price of collecting and storing is so low that "more is better." Commercial websites have habituated us to assuming that we have to trade our data (address, birth date, email, phone number and so on) for access.  That's a value exchange and a type of transaction that nonprofits simply don't need to perpetuate.

Any organization that doubts its ability to ensure that it can protect your digital information (i.e. ALL honest organizations) should approach the collection of information with great care. Given our human propensity to re-use passwords we should even consider whether requiring passwords for public access to nonprofit websites makes any sense. Our users will most likely use the same password they use everywhere else, we won't be able to protect it, and - oops - there goes that breach. Rather than the "all you can eat buffet" approach to user information, let's shift to "don't let your eyes be bigger than your stomach." In other words - don't ask for what you don't need. That way, you won't need to worry about having it and losing it. (Or being subpoenaed for it - more on that elsewhere)

Nonprofits bank on trust and integrity. We need to shift our digital behaviors to reflect this when it comes to collecting, storing (and possibly losing) information from those with whom we work.