The thought of creating a business as a solution to a social problem may be counterintuitive to some, in particular as a result of the condescending approach that poverty and social challenges should be addressed by charity and public action. But approaching social challenges with a business perspective combined with ethical, social, participatory and governance perspectives, can deliver solutions that are not only more effective and efficient, but also more flexible, sustainable and with growth potential and long term social impact. Here we explore the many ways a business approach can be used to address social challenges and their operational and legal aspects and implications.

  • Business Solutions to Social Challenges.
  • Social Impact from Business.
  • The Wide Spectrum of Social Impact from Business.
    • Pure Businesses, Ethical Businesses, Corporate Social Responsibility, Social Entrepreneurship, Social Businesses, Cooperatives, Non-Profit Organizations.
  • Legislative Frameworks
    • USA: Benefit Corporation and Low-profit limited liability company (L3C).
    • France: Social and Solidarity Economy Enterprise (ESS Enterprise).
    • European Union: European Commission Social Business Initiative.
  • Business Models for Non-Profit Organizations.
  • Hybrid Models and Incorporation Structures.
This course is part of our multi-module "Social Entrepreneurship and Impact from Business" program for full and rounded capacity building on Social Startups and Social Innovation. Click here for more details.
About the Instructor: Carlos Miranda Levy

Carlos Miranda Levy speaking at TEDxTokyo.A social entrepreneur and innovation technology expert with 20 years of work in human development, education, culture, disaster response and the environment, Carlos has led multiple social impact technology initiatives across the globe, while maintaining a successful career at the service of international organizations, government agencies and corporate and non-profit organizations.

His multiple credentials include a Stanford University Digital Vision Fellowship, a National University of Singapore Social Entrepreneurship Residency, a Google Developing World Scholarship Award, a Bill & Melinda Gates TEDGlobal Scholarship, a Reuters Foundation grant, among many others. Carlos has been featured on CNN as one of 20 Latin American Leaders on the Internet, on Forbes as a Latino Leader in Silicon Valley and as an Emerging Leader by New Media Consortium at MIT.

A balanced mix of tech skills, business savvy and understanding of social processes, give him a unique advantage for visualizing stakeholders and ecosystems, their processes and opportunities, drafting strategies, leading teams, organizing events and creating technology solutions. This is clearly appreciated in his work with vulnerable youth, disaster survivors, teachers, policy makers, software developers and communities, which has taken him from the Caribbean mountains to Silicon Valley, the Amazon basin and snowcapped Andes; to Haïti, Singapore and Japan, and more recently to Africa and Europe.

His hands-on, proactive spirit has benefited from the lessons learned through field experience at scenarios as diverse as remote rural villages, the headquarters of international organizations, Presidential offices and government agencies, high security prisons and some of the most prestigious universities in the world. He summarizes his approach and methodology to problem solving and ecosystem intervention with a simple phrase:

“never help: engage, enable, empower and connect”.
Photo by Ronald Cuyan
on Unsplash
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