Monday, February 25, 2008

Social Entrepreneurs at Stanford - Sun 2/24/08

The Center for Social Innovation at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Stanford Digital Vision Fellowship Program (sponsored by the Reuters Foundation) cohosted Social Entrepreneurship Day on Sunday, February 24, at the Wallenberg Learning Theatre from 3-5 PM.

[Photo is from a photo album by Tatyana Kanzaveli (LinkedIn, Facebook), CEO, Global Learning Foundation]

Kriss Deiglmeier, Executive Director for the Center for Social Innovation (CSI) at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, introduces the panelists.

Kriss was Chief Operating Officer (COO) for Juma Ventures, Director of Operations at Larkin Street Youth Center, and worked at the United Way of King County.

She has presented nationally and internationally on topics including asset development, social enterprise, and public private partnerships.

[Photo is from a photo album by Tatyana Kanzaveli]

John Kuner's ProjectView Blog has a great summary of the panelists' talks and summarizes their advice for prospective social entrepreneurs.

(1) Jenny Shilling Stein, Executive Director of the Draper Richards Foundation

(2) Jessica Jackley Flannery, Co-Founder and Director of Business Development of

(3) Amy Clark, Ashoka, Global Fellows Program Leader

(4) Suzanne McKechnie Klahr, Ashoka Fellow and Founder of BUILD

Stanford Digital Vision Fellows Class of 2007

Greg Wolff, president of UnaMesa Association, "an open association of people dedicated to improving the tools and information that help educators, healthcare providers, and communities around the world deliver better services with fewer costs. The organization functions as a virtual research and development lab with projects focused on creating practical solutions to problems, such as sharing medical records, that cut across individual services." (UnaMesa Wiki)

International Education and Resource Network (iEARN) is the world's largest non-profit global network that enables teachers and youth to use the Internet and other technologies to collaborate on projects that enhance learning and make a difference in the world.

Shashank Garg is developing an open-source, sustainable, and efficient disease surveillance system that will detect and respond to outbreaks in a timely manner. This system will utilize a mobile device to accurately collect data, validate it at the source, and immediately transmit it to a server where resident experts can identify trends and make informed decisions.

Garg won India’s Dewang Mehta Award for Innovation in Information Technology for being one of the seven co-developers of the Simputer.

Adam Tolnay runs the Y-Fi (Youth Financial Literacy) program, which aims to communicate the basics of personal financial management to youth in marginal areas via the use of fun, interactive, multi-player, multiple-turn simulation games delivered on mobile devices.

Adam will be working with inner city high school students in the U.S. to design and pilot Yi-Fi before rolling it out in his native Romania and his adopted homeland, India.

He has run educational programs in 14 countries - Learning Enterprises , The Learning Foundation India, The Educated Consumer Project

The "Ahimsa Center for Social Equity" proposes a 3-step support mechanism of "AWAKE" (Raise Awareness), "ARISE" (Build Capacity), and "ALIVE" (Investment) to provide a wider net and Ecosystem for entrepreneurs and communities involved in Social Issues.

Netika Raval has been developing a "Big Game" on water issues for children that will be relevant, interactive, useful for geo-spatial learning.

A byproduct of this game will be the collection of reliable, people centered information that will be accessible via a GIS map and community call centers. The objective is to track the resulting reduced dropout rates in 900,000 government schools, as well as to reduce the time and cost of information access for government and people.

Ahmad Atif Mumtaz leads Tele-Health-Care for Disaster Relief.

Whenever a major disaster hits a region, the basic infrastructure, including healthcare facilities, are severely damaged. Atif proposes to develop rapidly deployable and portable tele-health facilities in disaster hit areas so doctors can start treating patients quickly.

Ahmad Atif Mumtaz (LinkedIn) is a Pakistani entrepreneur promoting ICT technologies in the developing countries. Mr. Mumtaz has previously worked with social development organizations, including COMSATS and United Nations IDO.

In 2002, Mr. Mumtaz successfully launched an Internet startup, Cogilent Solutions which currently manages and runs the largest job hunt portal in Pakistan called, BrightSpyre. In 2004, he received the "Young Entrepreneur of the Year" Award for his services through Shell Corporation

Marvin Hall uses robotics competitions to capture the imagination of at-risk youth in inner cities in small, developing countries.

Marvin is the founder of the Halls of Learning robotics training center, has provided scholarships for 150 youth to attend his robotics courses, and has brought a Jamaican robotic team to an international competition. Go Marvin!

He has been improving the math, science, and creative thinking skills of youth in the United States for more than a decade.

John Kuner of smiling at the camera. Perhaps I'll be on one of his mobile stories? :-)

In this project, camera phones are used to create and share personal stories. Young people from various cultures learn more about each other as they connect with their counterparts in an online community. They also gain skills through the story creation process, such as communications, editing, and production.

His powerpoint presentation on "Mobile Storytelling and Video Sharing for Inter-Cultural Communication: How Personal Expression Leads to Job Skills".

Neerja Raman's Blog is called Digital Provide: From Good to Gold

Neerja Raman is a former Director, Strategic Planning and Imaging Systems Lab, Hewlett Packard Labs. She was inducted into the prestigious Hall of Fame, Women in Technology International (WITI).

She pioneered corporate recognition of diversity as a business value, and acquired skills to successfully navigate the pitfalls of being the only female in high pressure environments.

Lessons from her upbringing in India are articulated in a management book “The Practice and Philosophy of Decision Making: A Seven Step Spiritual Guide.” It was featured at the authors' expo "Books that Empower Women" by WITI.

Neerja has been a United Way Chair at HP. She serves on the advisory board of Maitri, a women’s self empowerment organization, is a member of the Indian Business and Professional Women support network, and is executive director of Indian American Women Empowered (IWE).

Invincibelle blog is a "community blog where experts share columns and articles in categories like business entrepreneurship, culture and communication," of which Neerja Raman is one of the authors.

Steve Vosloo runs the "The Digital Hero Book Project." A hero book is a low-cost, simple and effective form of psychosocial support (PSS) where a child is the author, illustrator, main character (hero) and editor of a paper-based book that is designed to help them deal with life's challenges.

The Digital Hero Book Project (DHBP) builds on the success of this Memory Work by introducing information and communication technologies (ICTs) that enable authors to digitise their hero books and publish them on a community-based website.

HIV/Aids, poverty, violence and unemployment affect a large proportion of youth in Southern and Eastern Africa. An indication of this is an estimated orphan population of 12 million in 2001. To help address these issues, REPSSI (Regional Psychosocial Support Initiative) provides psychosocial (social and emotional) technical support to over 60 implementing partners, including those in the Western Cape province of South Africa (SA).

Cathy Healy was at National Geographic for 16 years. She was also editor of AMÉRICAS magazine, published by the Organization of American States.

Cathy has been a newspaper reporter, novelist, magazine and Intranet editor, and collaborates with Digital Vision fellows to help turn their projects a reality.

- Mitchell Tsai (Harvard '86) - CEO, Spiritual Business Companions : FriendFeed, LinkedIn, Facebook

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