Tag Archives: Social Venture Network

Social Enterprise: A Resource List

Here are the books, periodicals, blogs, websites, and organizations I’ve come across in exploring the field of social enterprise. This is by no means a comprehensive list (although, so far as I can tell, it’s longer than any other I’ve found). And I haven’t read everything here or engaged with all the websites or organizations in the list — though I’m working on it.

I’ve boldfaced those items with which I am personally familiar and recommend as good sources of information and insight about social entrepreneurship. The books I’ve reviewed in this blog are linked to their reviews.


Bryan Bell, Editor, Good Deeds, Good Design: Community Service Through Architecture (2004)

David Bornstein, How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas, Updated Edition (2007)

—, The Price of a Dream: The Story of the Grameen Bank (1997, 2005)

— and Susan Davis, Social Entrepreneurship: What Everyone Needs to Know (2010)

Ben Cohen and Mal Warwick, Values-Driven Business: How to Change the World, Make Money, and Have Fun (2006)

Daryl Collins, Jonathan Morduch, Stuart Rutherford, and Orlanda Ruthven, Portfolios of the Poor: How the World’s Poor Live on $2 a Day (2009)

Jim Collins, Good to Great and the Social Sectors: A Monograph to Accompany Good to Great (2005)

Leslie R. Crutchfield and Heather McLeod Grant, Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits, 2nd Edition (2008, 2012)

J. Gregory Dees, Jed Emerson, and Peter Economy, Strategic Tools for Social Entrepreneurs: Enhancing the Performance of Your Enterprising Nonprofit (2002)

Cheryl L. Dorsey and Lara Galinsky, Be Bold (2006)

John Elkington and Pamela Hartigan, The Power of Unreasonable People: How Social Entrepreneurs Create Markets That Change the World (2008)

Vijay Govindarajan and Chris Trimble, Reverse Innovation: Create Far From Home, Win Everywhere (2012)

Adam Hochschild, Bury The Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves (2006)

Tracy Kidder, Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World (2003)

Paul Charles Light, The Search for Social Entrepreneurship (2008)

Kevin Lynch and Julius Walls, Jr., Mission, Inc.: The Practitioner’s Guide to Social Enterprise (2008)

Johanna Mair, Jeffrey Robinson, and Kai Hockerts, Social Entrepreneurship (2006)

Pavithra Mehta, Infinite Vision: How Aravind Became the World’s Greatest Business Case for Compassion, (2011)

Alex Nicholls, Editor, Social Entrepreneurship: New Models of Sustainable Social Change (2006)

Jacqueline Novogratz, The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World (2009)

Paul Polak, Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches Fail (2009)

C. K. Prahalad, Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profits, Revised and Updated (2004, 2009)

Beverly Schwartz, Rippling: How Social Entrepreneurs Spread Innovation Throughout the World (2012)

Rupert Scofield, The Social Entrepreneur’s Handbook: How to Start, Build, and Run a Business That Improves the World (2011)

Cynthia E. Smith, Design for the Other 90% (2009)

Social Enterprise Alliance, Succeeding at Social Enterprise: Hard-Won Lessons for Nonprofits and Social Entrepreneurs (2010)

Jane C. Wei-Skillern, James E. Austin, Herman B. Leonard, and Howard H. Stevenson, Entrepreneurship in the Social Sector (2007)

Wilford Welch, Tactics of Hope: How Social Entrepreneurs Are Changing Our World (2008)

Muhammad Yunus, Creating a World Without Poverty: Social Business and the Future of Capitalism (2008)


Stanford Social Innovation Review (Stanford University), http://www.ssireview.org/

Innovations: Technology, Governance, Globalization (MIT), http://www.mitpressjournals.org/loi/itgg


Evan Carmichael’s Top 30 Social Entrepreneurship Blogs to Watch in 2012, http://www.evancarmichael.com/blog/2012/04/10/the-top-30-social-entrepreneur-blogs-to-watch-in-2012/

Skoll Foundation Social Edge, http://www.socialedge.org/


World Resource Institute’s NextBillion.net, http://nextbillion.net/

CSRWire, http://www.csrwire.com/

Alltop’s Social Entrepreneurship Coverage, http://social-entrepreneurship.alltop.com/

Catalyst Fund’s Social Business blog, http://www.clearlyso.com/

Dowser.org, http://dowser.org/

E-180’s Top  25 Social Entrepreneurship Websites, http://blog.e-180.com/en/2009/02/our-top-25-social-entrepreneurship-websites/


Institute for Social Entrepreneurs, http://www.socialent.org/

Ashoka: Innovators for the Public, http://www.ashoka.org/

Echoing Green, http://www.echoinggreen.org/

Skoll Center for Social Entrepreneurship (Oxford University), http://www.sbs.ox.ac.uk/centres/skoll/Pages/default.aspx

Social Venture Network, http://svn.org/

Social Enterprise Alliance, https://www.se-alliance.org/

Net Impact, http://netimpact.org/

University Network for Social Entrepreneurship, http://bit.ly/KwqWgz


Bainbridge Graduate Institute, http://www.bgi.edu/

Center for Responsible Business, Haas School of Business, University of California Berkeley, http://responsiblebusiness.haas.berkeley.edu/

Center for Social Innovation, Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, http://csi.gsb.stanford.edu/

Presidio School of Management, http://www.presidioedu.org/

Babson College, MBA in Entrepreneurship,  http://www.babson.edu/graduate/Pages/landing-graduate.aspx?gclid=CPm_1YL37rACFUQaQgodizXjug

Marlboro College Graduate School, MBA in Sustainability, https://gradschool.marlboro.edu/academics/mba/

Fuqua School of Business, Duke University, http://www.fuqua.duke.edu/student_resources/academics/concentrations/social_entrepreneurship/

Also see Aspen Institute rating of top 30 SUStainable MBA programs,  http://www.topmba.com/mba-rankings/sustainability-mba


Filed under FAQs & Commentaries

A serial entrepreneur tells his story, and it’s hilarious

A review of Raising Eyebrows: A Failed Entrepreneur Finally Gets It Right, by Dal LaMagna

@@@@@ (5 out of 5)

Over the years I’ve participated in several surveys aimed at determining the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs. Finally now, after reading Dal LaMagna’s brutally honest memoir about his long, eccentric business career, I understand the one truly essential attribute an entrepreneur needs for success: chutzpah.

It was chutzpah that led Dal to organize a petition campaign about the oppressive noise overhead from the airport nearby — at the age of 8. It was chutzpah again when he set up a computer dating service as a college freshman, and when its collapse reflected poorly on the priests who ran the Catholic college, set up what apparently became Europe’s first computer dating service in Switzerland, where they had exiled him for a year. It was chutzpah when he applied to Harvard Business School with a long, detailed accont of the 16 unsuccessful businesses he’d started. And it was certainly chutzpah when he ran for President — of the United States! — in 2008. There is no end of chutzpah in this outrageously enjoyable story. And many of the anecdotes about the misadventures of this perennial class clown are downright hilarious. Dal himself even laughed about some of them!

Dal, who has been a friend of mine for several years, is best known to the public — at least to the eyebrow-tweezing public — as Tweezerman. By Dal’s account, the company of this name that he founded as he approached middle age, was his 17th business venture. The failure of the previous 16 caused him endless grief, lost friendships, and considerable debt. However, Tweezerman grew from a one-person operation in his 400-square-foot bungalow on Long Island into the leading brand in the beauty implements business, a staff of more than 100, a large wharehouse on Long Island, and a manufacturing plant in India, eventually resulting in a sale that made Dal a millionaire many times over.

Dal LaMagna practices what he calls “responsible capitalism.” In eschewing the more familiar term “socially responsible business,” which is widely used in Social Venture Network, of which Dal and I are both longstanding members, he seems to be emphasizing that running a business in a socially responsible manner is just good business and really not anything out of the ordinary. Except that it is, in an era when the ghost of Milton Friedman haunts Wall Street and Main Street alike.

Books of this sort are rarely so well written as Raising Eyebrows. Dal was wise to work with the partnership of Carla Reuben and Wally Carbone, whose mastery of organization and style is enviable. This book is not just instructive and insightful. It’s also fun to read.

Oh, and by the way: I’m way out of Dal’s league when it comes to chutzpah, but I’ve practiced it on many occasions by starting businesses or investing in companies on the spur of the moment based on instinct alone. And you know something? It’s served me well.

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Filed under Business, Nonfiction