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Posted By Changemakers blogs
On 15 November 2011 - 7:10pm

Eight winners have been selected from the Partnering for Excellence: Innovations in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Education competition, a search for the most innovative ways to inspire STEM-rich learning in our nation’s classrooms (particularly in high-need communities) by connecting students with STEM professionals.

The competition was hosted by Ashoka Changemakers, with support from Carnegie Corporation of New York and The Opportunity Equation. Winners were selected by a combination of open voting on the website, the recommendations of competition partners, and a rigorous assessment by a distinguished panel of judges including Dr. Bruce Alberts, Tim Brown, ...more

Posted By Nat Wei's blog
On 15 November 2011 - 7:00pm

As I go round the country these days I am often on the lookout for unusual places where community thrives, away from traditional locations we might normally associate with the idea of community. Many of these are sport, arts, or environment related, perhaps because people want to interact in less formal places based more on their interests or leisure – a challenge potentially to those running government and civil society-led buildings given the debate on the future of community assets and their funding at the moment. The future may increasingly about hubs where people already go, which have a dominant emphasis or theme, but which are also multiple-use, clustering many different public, private, and voluntary activities so that the whole is self-sustaining.

One example I recently visited of an unexpected hub for community was a garden centre. Scotsdale Garden Centre in Cambridge is what the garden or horticultural industry calls a “destination centre”. Indeed despite going ...more

Posted By Changemakers blogs
On 15 November 2011 - 6:14pm

Join Ashoka Changemakers® on November 22, 2011 for an Asia #SocEntChat about Making More Health. From 1 p.m – 3 p.m. IST (Indian Standard Time, or 2:30-4:30am EDT), join us from anywhere in the world to participate in a Twitter-based discussion with innovators, social entrepreneurs, and enthusiasts about solutions that will transform health for individuals, families, and communities around the world.

Have you checked out the finalists of the Making More Health competition yet? Do you have an issue to raise about the next generation of health models? This is your chance to share your thoughts and ask leading innovators your most burning questions.


On 15 November 2011 - 6:05pm

“If you love everything, you will perceive the divine mystery in things.”  – Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821-1881) was a Russian writer, best known for his novels, Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamotzov.  He is considered a founder of existentialism, and often wrote from the point of view of the “underground” man.


Posted By The BSSEC blog
On 15 November 2011 - 3:30pm

And now something for those of you who have not been keeping up. I only just found this — by accident. Maybe everybody else already knows about it…

On the 11th October 2011 Nick Hurd published a long open letter to charities and social enterprises seeking to set a welter of recent policy announcements in the “strategic framework in which they sit”.

In fact it is genuinely useful. If you can’t always keep the government’s strategic aims for civil society in order in your head (and answer questions on the strategic linkages between them, with extra marks awarded for currently acceptable usage of terminology), then read this and it will do it for you. You might — as I did —  even spot things you were previously unaware of.

The letter is flagged up on the ...more

Posted By The BSSEC blog
On 15 November 2011 - 3:04pm

A new fifty member-strong association of social impact practitioners – the Social Impact Analysts Association (SIAA) – has been launched to try and ensure that members can identify and sign up to an agreed framework on social impact measurement for the sector.

Pressure to improve the sector’s record on measuring social impact has been mounting for several years now both in the sector and amongst policy-makers, but there is still widespread disagreement regarding what should be analysed. Indeed, different parts of the sector — charities vs. social enterprises — barely talk a common language when it comes to social impact. If you don’t believe me check SIAA’s website — they say, “SIAA is committed to assessing our own impact. We are currently developing our own theory of change. Please check back soon for more details!”

The major problem, I believe, is less to do with which social impact measurement technique ...more

Posted By Ben Metz blog
On 15 November 2011 - 2:19pm

Hat’s off to the the folk at Duck Soup, one of London’s newest eateries.  They have excelled themselves, as the Marx Brothers did back in 1933, and produced a fine, eclectic eatery offering contemporary tapas and a selection of larger plates (best shared so you get to taste it all)…  Quality ingredients and thoughtful recipes drawn from all manner of sources (but with a solid UK and Mediterranean provenance) make Duck Soup a real treat.  Add in a simple but great wine list, attentive staff and a no booking policy and Soho has another truly exceptional eatery…


Posted By Ed Mayo's blog
On 14 November 2011 - 11:44pm

What is, as I see it, the co-operative view on the occupy protests?

First, we recognise that this is a social movement – fluid, based on values, open and creative. Many of the great changes that underpin society today – votes for women, tackling racism, the recognition of human rights – have emerged from social movements. The co-operative sector is also a social movement and it is an economic actor. We have opportunities both to offer and to learn in our overlapping engagement with the protests.

Second, we endorse the fundamental questions the protests ask of today’s economy. In simple terms, if capitalism is the idea that economic activity should be directed solely towards a return on capital, then not only is it a nonsense, but we have never lived in a capitalist society. Family, state, and community shape every aspect of economic life. Money, money, money is not just a poor proxy for well-being, it is an impoverished and flawed account of individual behaviour and ...more

Posted By Changemakers blogs
On 14 November 2011 - 10:09pm


THIS THURSDAY November 17th from 2:30am – 4:30am EST (1pm - 3pm IST) the #socentchat focuses on citizen media in the Middle East, Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Far East.

Our citizen media colleagues from Asia get their chance to be heard! So… innovators, citizen journalists, online activists, content-creators, communicators, online media gurus, and lovers of all things technology:  If you are in the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, or the Far East and have been unable to join previous #socentchats because of time differences – this is your chance.

This chat will build on the previous conversations about the status and future of citizen media. In previous #socentchats, we discussed the general state of affairs, challenges, and success stories ...more