Innovating The Brick-and-Mortar Injustice Infrastructure

Mills Scofield

This week''s post is by Andy Posner , Co-Founder & Executive Director of Capital Good Fund ( CGF ), a non-profit microfinance organization targeting the root causes of poverty through innovative micro-loans and personal financial coaching.

Learning from Microfinance's Woes

Harvard Business Review

A few weeks ago, I attended a lecture about microfinance, and got sucker-punched. Expecting to hear a litany of pros and cons about the business, and an exploration of good and bad models, I was instead greeted with a knockout punch: Microfinance doesn't work, at least not in the way we think it does. The pugilist-presenter was David Roodman, a fellow at the Center for Global Development and the author of a new book, Due Diligence: An Impertinent Inquiry into Microfinance.

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Guest Post: An Entrepreneur's Thoughts on Market Incentives & Foreign Aid

Mills Scofield

” He also highlighted the fundraising events of another British organization. One of his main tasks was to structure a hedging derivative that negated foreign exchange risks so that Microfinance institutions could take safer loans from the developed world.

Why CEOs have Liberal Arts Degrees

Mills Scofield

While in high school, she started a 50-student organization supporting Acid Survivors Foundation to help rehabilitate burn survivors of acid attacks. She's spending the summer in Dhaka doing microfinance.

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The Microfinance Contagion Scenario

Harvard Business Review

So far, the Andhra Pradesh (AP) microfinance crisis has largely been viewed as a local issue, with relatively little impact beyond AP or India's borders. Other microfinance crises, in Bolivia, Nicaragua, Nigeria, and Bosnia, have not spread beyond the borders of a particular country. In a recent paper, Jonathan Morduch and Jonathan Conning explain the role of debt and equity financing in the microfinance industry.

An Approach to Ending Poverty That Works

Harvard Business Review

Microfinance and other market-based interventions don’t generally reach them. Ending extreme poverty by 2030 is the BHAG – the big, hairy audacious goal – of our generation.

Can Technology End Poverty?

Harvard Business Review

The organization I'm part of, BRAC, is known for going to scale with solutions that are often radically low-tech. At the program's peak, 700 pumps covered 27,000 acres, with the loans constituting 9% of BRAC's total microfinance portfolio.

Can Technology End Poverty?

Harvard Business Review

The organization I'm part of, BRAC, is known for going to scale with solutions that are often radically low-tech. At the program's peak, 700 pumps covered 27,000 acres, with the loans constituting 9% of BRAC's total microfinance portfolio.

What Makes Social Entrepreneurs Different

Harvard Business Review

Social entrepreneurs have also been some of the most attentive followers of the academic debate between the likes of Mark Pitt and Jonathan Murdoch about whether microfinance really helps reduce poverty.

Scaling Up Without Losing Your Edge

Harvard Business Review

Schumacher, one of the fathers of the Green movement, declared that "small is beautiful" and called for "a new orientation of science and technology towards the organic, the gentle, the non-violent, the elegant and beautiful." So how does such an organization stay nimble?

The Conference That’s Trying to Reinvent How We Network

Harvard Business Review

Of course, not all business event organizers work so hard to help attendees network. C2 Montréal’s outdoor plaza at night. Courtesy of C2. This past May, I found myself at a conference unlike any other I’d ever attended.

How Social Entrepreneurs Can Have the Most Impact

Harvard Business Review

My organization, The Bridgespan Group, received 1,800 applications for 18 entry-level positions consulting to nonprofits and philanthropy. This is indeed the risk, but they can avoid or offset this fragmentation by adopting three approaches that allow even the smallest social enterprise to have outsized impact: Scale impact, not organizations. is Year Up , an organization that mentors and trains disconnected youth into living-wage jobs. Social enterprise in the U.S.

It's Not All About Growth for Social Enterprises

Harvard Business Review

When organizations talk to my colleagues and me at the Skoll Foundation about growth in staff size, budget size, or client / beneficiary numbers, we often ask "So what?" For us the question is not how do you grow organizations but how do you scale impact?

Give Impact Investing Time and Space to Develop

Harvard Business Review

The sector will organize itself across the spectrum from philanthropy to investing, and the resulting clusters will demonstrate the differences in risk, financial returns, target customer, and social impact across the various sub-sectors of impact investing.

Facebook Presence Is an Important Clue to a Social Venture's Future

Harvard Business Review

What does this mean for would-be investors and for the supporters (both individuals and organizations) of social entrepreneurs? This makes sense to Milaap.org , a social enterprise in Bangalore that crowdsources low-cost capital for microfinance institutions through its online platform.

Entrepreneurs: You're More Important Than Your Business Plan

Harvard Business Review

Marquis created an organization called Coaching For Change to engage young Black men as entrepreneurs pursuing business opportunities related to basketball, football, and other sports. Marquis is building his organization in Massachusetts, a far cry from the Los Angeles of his youth.

Transforming Rural India Through Agricultural Innovation

Harvard Business Review

To sustain the benefits derived, the Social Development initiatives of NAF have helped village communities in establishing community-based institutions like Farmers Clubs (160), Self Help Groups and Joint Liability Groups (900), Farmers Producer Organizations (6), Watershed committees (25) etc for collective decision and action. Over 1,900 beneficiaries have established micro-enterprises for which microfinance has been facilitated.

Servant Leadership Observer ? November 2010

Modern Servant Leader

Blogging is a Mirror of Yourself and Your Organization. Peer-to-Peer Microfinance: A Sustainable Solution to Poverty. Twitter. LINKEDIN. The Modern Servant Leader Servant Leadership & Technology. Leadership. Technology. Resources. Other. Archives.

Making Sense of the Many Kinds of Impact Investing

Harvard Business Review

Currently, impact can mean anything from venture investments in new health technologies to microfinance loans in Peru; from affordable housing in the US to renewable energy in India; from social impact bonds to private equity funds that create jobs.

Why CEOs have Liberal Arts Degrees

Mills Scofield

While in high school, she started a 50-student organization supporting Acid Survivors Foundation to help rehabilitate burn survivors of acid attacks. She's spending the summer in Dhaka doing microfinance.

Funders Can Give More than Money

Harvard Business Review

With the country still dangling from the fiscal cliff, charitable organizations like ours are finding that the individuals and foundations we depend on are more discerning than ever in their choices of how to spend their philanthropic capital. When presented with a surprising idea, smart organizations will bravely listen, because what comes next might just be game-changing innovation. We know that microfinance alone will not break the poverty cycle.

Global Entrepreneurs Need New Funding Models

Harvard Business Review

Even non-governmental organizations, hardly usual allies for the private sector, are joining the wave of support for small business. We wanted to do this because we recognize that small enterprises are a very significant engine for development; they create employment, which tends to be more sustainable and better paid than you would find in the more informal microfinance sector," says Oxfam's Nicholas Colloff.

It Takes a Village to Raise an Entrepreneur

Harvard Business Review

Social entrepreneurship has evolved a great deal since the late 1980s, when pioneers like City Year 's Alan Khazei and Teach for America 's Wendy Kopp took great risks to prove that innovative organizations could produce transformative social change. For the last two years, we have studied this evolution with our partners at Echoing Green , a fellowship-granting organization that provides seed funding to emerging social entrepreneurs.