Social Innovation

Kiva says: five tips for social entrepreneurs

Anything that occurs at an intersection between Skoll Foundation and Kiva is likely to be worth checking out.

So I’m recommending this as a well-spent few minutes for social entrepreneurs:   a video clip of an interview with Kiva’s Primal Shah.

Covered much better in his video, but a few highlights:

– Blog it, show your progress, and include your struggles and constraints.   Letting your constraints be known to the public can lead to people stepping up and helping out:  it did for Kiva.

– Build an advisory board – experts who get credit online.  Their expertise make you look credible, and their networks build leverage.  People feel that they are co-creating something important.

– Less planning and projecting, more starting – on whatever scale – in an idea you believe in.  Don’t ask for permission.

Elsewhere on Skoll, John Wood of Room to Read said something similar – his advice in response to one of the common themes he hears from people who want to follow their passion … stop asking for permission.

Primal Shah left his job at PayPal to co-build Kiva MicroFunds, an organization providing microfinance in poor countries, allowing people to help themselves

John Wood left his executive role at Microsoft to start Room to Read, partner with local communities throughout the developing world to provide education via libraries, local language kids books, new schools, computer labs, and education for girls.

Skoll Foundation supports social entrepreneurship, giving over $ 30 million USD/yr. in grants.

Jeff Skoll was the first eBay President, championed the eBay Foundation, and is the CEO of the intriguing and gutsy Participant Productions that funds big-name, Oscar-level Hollywood films that promote social values.   He also funded the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship, at Oxford University.

Global Young Social Entrepreneurs Competition

Are you 30 years or younger? Are you leading a business or venture that creates revenue but also aims to make the world a better place? Are internet, computer, mobile phones or other IT tools an integral part of your business or venture ?

The Global Young Social Entrepreneurs’ Competition runs in all regions of the globe.

Apply until 15 August 2007 at:

Further information is available at the GK3 media corner at

This tip from IT Connect Online and Global Knowledge Partnership.