The Acumen Fund is a global charitable venture fund that contributes to the eradication of poverty by investing in enterprises that stimulate economies in poor areas. Focus is on supplying market-based critical services, such as health care, energy, housing and water.
Aid to Artisans
"We blend a passion for the deep-rooted cultures and handmade traditions of the developing world with a commitment to building profitable businesses. Environmentally sound practices are at the foundation of our methodology. We recognize that we can only bring lasting economic growth if we provide an integrated approach to product development, business skills training, market access and eco-effective processes."
All Day Buffet
An "incubator for social innovation" that hosts cross-disciplinary programs, often around meals. Its 2009 Feast Conference
will take place in New York City on October 1.
Architecture for Humanity
Nonprofit design services firm founded in 1999 that works to create a more sustainable world by bringing construction and development aid to places where it is most needed. Organizes more than 40,000 professionals to directly affect the lives of 10,000 people annually. Director and co-founder, Cameron Sinclair
Named for a leader who unified the Indian subcontinent in the 3rd century B.C., Ashoka is a pioneer in the field of social entrepreneurship. Operates in 60 countries through a fellowship program that has supported more than 2,000 participants.
Nonprofit design consultancy that provides building and implementation help to organizations in need of products for social change.
Centre for Social Innovation
"The Centre for Social Innovation is a dynamic space in downtown Toronto, Canada. Our mission is to spark and support new ideas that are tackling the social, environmental, economic and cultural challenges we face today."
D-Rev is a nonprofit design firm and technology incubator that develops market-driven products to improve the health and incomes of people living on less than $2 per day. Their mission is to start a design revolution in the way products are designed, marketed and distributed. They enable new sources of income and improved healthcare for people who represent the "other 90%” of the world.
Founded in 1991, this Raleigh, North Carolina-based organization uses the talents of recent architecture and planning graduates to provide improvements to low-income rural communities. Supports a program of Community Design Fellows.
Design In Kind
A collaborative network of designers who work with clients in resource-scarce areas to provide access to clean water, education and health care. Current projects include a test for HIV and STDs and a training program for reducing infant mortality in scores of African and Asian villages.
Design Seed Enterprise Creation Lab
Organization founded out of Auburn University's industrial design department to improve the social conditions of Alabama’s poverty-stricken Black Belt, a region of a dozen counties named for the rich soil. The lab employs design thinking and aggressive business practices to develop local manufacturing enterprises with the potential to create hundreds of jobs.
Design Studio for Social Intervention
Boston-based "creativity lab for the non-profit sector" that unites urban designers, cultural architects, game designers, performance artists, and youth to translate design theory into large urban games, block parties, silkscreened T-shirts, political campaigns, and interactive spatial installations.
Designers Without Borders
Non-profit consortium of designers and design educators working to assist institutions of the developing world with their communication needs.
The desigNYC collective was formed by group of designers and design advocates with the mission of helping nonprofit and community groups in need of design services connect with professional, pro bono design resources. desigNYC was inspired by President Obama's and Mayor Bloomberg's Service initiatives and other groups doing great work in New York City and beyond.
Intelligent Mobility International
Seeks to help the estimated 300 million disabled people in the developing world. Programs include IMI Wheels, which produces innovative mobility devices suitable for the terrain in developing countries, and IMI Seeds, which promotes economic independence for those with disabilities.
Interaction Institute for Social Change
"We are a nonprofit organization that harnesses the power of collaboration within the social sector to create a just and sustainable world. IISC provides consulting, facilitation, network building, leadership development, and training services so that our clients can innovate, think strategically and take vision to action. We build the capacity of all with whom we work by modeling the behaviors and transferring the skills and tools of collaboration.
"Today our focus is on integrating technology and new social media to achieve greater social impact in all of our collaborative work."
Member-supported community dedicated to the professional practice of interaction design. Sponsors annual conference.
Nonprofit design studio founded by Bay Area designer Michael Osborne that works exclusively for charitable organizations, offering solutions that improve group identity and marketing materials.
Project for Public Spaces
New York-based non-profit dedicated to creating and sustaining vibrant community spaces. Since its founding in 1975 has served 2,000 communities in 26 countries.
Project H Design
Charitable venture founded in 2008 by Emily Pilloton that champions design as a tool for social improvement, especially in the realm of products. "A nonprofit coalition of hundreds of designers worldwide who work locally and globally to develop and implement product design solutions for Humanity, Habitats, Health, and Happiness."
San Francisco organization founded in 2002 by John Peterson that "puts the resources of architecture in the service of the public interest. We identify and solve practical problems of human interaction in the built environment and act as a catalyst for public discourse through education, advocacy and the design of public spaces and amenities."
Created in 1999 by eBay’s first president, Jeff Skoll, to promote his vision of a more peaceful and prosperous world. Advances systemic change to benefit communities around the world by investing in, connecting and celebrating social entrepreneurs — individuals dedicated to pioneering new solutions that result in lasting improvements to complex social problems.
Invests in social entrepreneurs through the Skoll Awards for Social Entrepreneurship
. Connects them through Social Edge
, an online community, and via the annual Skoll World Forum on Social Entrepreneurship
The Association for Community Design
Established in 1977 as a national network and voice for those involved in community-based design and planning. Seeks to broaden the field of community design through more than 40 centers in the U.S. and an annual conference.
The Designer's Accord
International coalition of more than 170,000 designers, engineers, corporate leaders and others invested in positive social and environmental action. Described as the "Kyoto Treaty of design," the accord requires adopters to follow five guidelines: a public declaration of participation, effort to bring sustainability into client conversations, effort to educate one's design teams about sustainability, consideration of one's own ethical footprint, and contribution to "the communal knowledge base for sustainable design."
The Graphic Alliance
A network for graphic designers, website developers and other professionals who are pursuing social change. "We are committed to helping build a new social order based on direct democracy, communal economics, human rights and ecological sensibility. We believe that design and technology are important aspects of the struggle for freedom, peace and social justice. We stand united in our opposition to concentrated power, discrimination and oppression in its many forms. We promote social ownership and democratic control over information, ideas, technology and the means of communication."
"Founded in 1975, WHY is a leader in the fight against hunger and poverty in the United States and around the world.... Advances long-term solutions to hunger and poverty by supporting community-based organizations that empower individuals and build self-reliance, i.e., offering job training, education and after-school programs; increasing access to housing and health care; providing microcredit and entrepreneurial opportunities; teaching people to grow their own food; and assisting small farmers. WHY connects these organizations to funders, media and legislators."
Worldstudio is an innovative marketing and design firm that believes corporations hold the power to make lasting social and environmental change. They create and implement grassroots programs that allow clients to engage with their key constituencies in lasting and meaningful ways.