Being Apolitical Is an Illusion

October 31, 2020SICI News, Blog

One month ago, Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase, a cryptocurrency startup innovating in the finance space, published a blog post, which began: “There have been a lot of difficult events in the world this year: a global pandemic, shelter in place, social unrest, widespread protests and riots, and west coast wildfires. On top of that, … Read More

Change That Lasts

September 30, 2020SICI News, Blog

People gather to mourn the death of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg at the Supreme Court in Washington, on Sept. 20. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Photo As someone who teaches about social innovation and social change, I am always on the lookout for exemplars that reveal both timeless and contemporary lessons. So on September 18th, when Supreme … Read More

Meet the 2020-21 Marla and Barry Beck Visiting Social Innovators

September 14, 2020News, Blog

The Social Innovation and Change Initiative (SICI) is honored to announce the Marla and Barry Beck Visiting Social Innovators for the 2020-2021 academic year. Each year, SICI is privileged to host a group of accomplished practitioners from around the world who operate beyond traditional boundaries, bringing a multi-sector, global, systems perspective to their social innovation work. 

Meet the 2020 Cheng Fellows!

September 1, 2020SICI News, Blog

This year, Fellows are building community wealth, creating healthier communities, transforming healthcare systems, and re-imagining education. They include healthcare intrapreneurs, educators, nonprofit leaders, social entrepreneurs, organizers, and community change-makers. And for the first time, the 2020 cohort represents students across five Harvard schools: HBS, HGSE, HKS, HSPH, and Harvard College. This cohort exemplifies the strength and promise of cross-sectoral, cross-community social problem-solving.

“Wait and See” Mode

August 31, 2020SICI News, Blog

Two weeks ago, I emailed a colleague to ask if I could introduce him to someone and he wrote back “Would love the intro. Off this week, but back next week, and raring to go for the fall!” Raring to go for fall?! I had to blink back shock for a full minute before I … Read More

Transparent Gatekeeping

July 31, 2020SICI News, Blog

As many of you know, one of SICI’s most cherished undertakings is the New World Social Innovation Fellows Program, an accelerator for aspiring social changemaker students at Harvard. Applications for our sixth cohort of Fellows closed on July 12th and are currently moving through a rigorous series of selection proceedings. Thousands of institutions in the … Read More

Getting Beyond Incrementalism

June 30, 2020SICI News, Blog

As part of the Social Innovation + Change Initiative, I am frequently asked how I can tell if a social impact effort is “truly innovative” (interestingly, far fewer people ask the same question about “true social change”). My response, though perhaps disappointing for some, is that most of the ideas we study and support at … Read More

New Beginnings

May 31, 2020SICI News, Blog

For those who work in higher education, it is almost impossible to be on campus in May without thinking about graduation. Soon the people we’ve come to know, learn from, and care for will move on to other places and roles. While no one was sure how the virtual version would go this year, in … Read More

Charting a Sustainable Future

April 30, 2020SICI News, Blog

Earlier this month, April 22nd, marked 50 years since the very first Earth Day, a day when 20 million Americans — 10% of the U.S. population at the time — mobilized to raise awareness about mankind’s ongoing environmental destruction and called for a new direction with respect to global environmental policy. For many of us, … Read More

COVID-19 Update From SICI

March 31, 2020SICI News, Blog

I am sitting in front of my living room window as I write, looking onto our neighborhood in Cambridge, astounded by the change that has transpired on Harvard’s campus, and in our world, in six weeks time. It is my deepest hope that, as a part of our cherished community, you are reading this in … Read More