Global Issues Webinars

Innovations that address global challenges such as education, environment, and health

Our on-demand SSIR Live! webinars are offered every 4-6 weeks, and feature the Stanford Social Innovation Review’s most provocative and important topics. Webinars are available for purchase on-demand 12 months after the date of the live event.

The Hidden Financial Lives of America’s Poor & Middle Class, Part I

January 21, 2016 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Jonathan Morduch, Rachel Schneider, H. Luke Shaefer, & Diana Elliott

This webinar is the first in a two-part series on The Hidden Financial Lives of America’s Poor and Middle Class.

What are the implications of the U.S. Financial Diaries and other recent research and how can they provide insight to help families escape poverty, build stability, move up the ladder, and invest in the future? The first webinar in this series will discuss the results and implications of new research into the hidden financial lives of low- and moderate-income American households and delve into the effects of income volatility, how families are adjusting to this volatility, and the gaps in current programs and policies.

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Corporations and NGOs: Empowering Women Globally

July 21, 2015 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Marissa Wesely, Dina Dublon, Daniel Jae-Won Lee, & Muadi Mukenge

This webinar is part of a two-webinar package on Advancing Women.

With growing data on the powerful impacts of increased gender equality in various spheres, many global corporations are creating programs designed to empower women economically to improve the quality of their supply chains, enhance their access to talent, and increase the productivity of their workforce. Yet, for economic empowerment programs to create sustainable and transformative change in women’s lives—and have lasting effect for business—they need to address other underlying issues that prevent women from realizing their full potential as economic agents, including control over reproductive health, access to childcare, voice in family and community, enforceable property rights, and protection from violence. One effective way to do this is to work with a group of NGOs that corporations often overlook: grassroots women’s organizations (GWOs) that have been working for many years in complex local contexts to empower women and advance women’s rights. This webinar will explore finding the right partner, building effective partnerships, and evaluating the social and business impacts of these programs. This webinar is for corporate leaders seeking innovative ways to make their women’s empowerment programs more impactful, GWO leaders exploring paths to engage with the corporate sector, and others interested in effective models of cross-sector collaboration and/or women’s rights and empowerment issues globally.

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Related Story: Empowering Women at the Grassroots

Data-Driven Strategy in the Social Sector (Complimentary)

February 26, 2014 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Jon Sotsky, Sean Gourley, & Jeffrey Bladt

By applying big data to their research, organizations can better inform their decision-making, understand the fields in which they work, and achieve the greatest impact. Join Jon Sotsky of the Knight Foundation, Sean Gourley of Quid (Knight Foundation’s data analytics firm), and’s Jeffrey Bladt as they discuss new ways to help people engage around complex issues and research, applying breakthrough techniques in data mapping and visualization. They will use their recent collaboration on the report, “The Emergence of Civic Tech: Investments in a Growing Field,” to provide insights on integrating data-driven models into social sector research and the trend toward open sharing of data and ideas. This webinar is for strategy and assessment teams, research and communication professionals, and anyone at foundations, nonprofits, and social enterprises focused on highlighting the impact of their work.

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When Good Is Not Good Enough

October 8, 2013 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Bill Shore, Darell Hammond, & Amy Celep

Though it may seem counterintuitive for a sector already struggling to support, sustain, and scale up its impact—panelists Shore, Hammond, and Celep argue that nonprofits need to embrace a much heavier lift. They must look beyond short-term achievements that please funders, staff, and stakeholders but yield only incremental change, and instead hold themselves accountable for the harder-to-achieve long-term outcomes that will ultimately solve social problems.

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Related Story: When Good Is Not Good Enough

We’re Getting Data, Now What?

November 27, 2012 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Lucy Bernholz, Darin McKeever, Jake Porway, & June Wang

Thanks to rapid advances in computer and communication technologies, it is possible for stakeholders in the nonprofit sector to disclose more, to know more, and to demand more through increased transparency and collaboration. In October, a group of the largest US foundations committed to release their grant information in a consistent, open, and frequent manner. Dubbed the “Reporting Commitment,” 15 large foundations have agreed to report at least quarterly to the Foundation Center’s transparency-centered website, In addition, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and the financial firm LiquidNet announced in October a “New Markets for Good” effort, focused on helping donors—individuals and foundations—use data about different organizations to inform their giving choices. This webinar will explore the repercussions of these moves toward big and open data. Presenters will analyze how more timely grant reporting from foundations can allow other foundations and nonprofits to look for relevant patterns, identify potential partners, scan a field of activity, and potentially develop strategies that take into account other philanthropic resources.

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Leading in a Hyperconnected World: Driving Innovation & Impact with Digital Media

May 30, 2012 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Ben Hecht, Claire Diaz Ortiz, & Steve Downs

New digital media platforms and social networks have radically democratized the ways people produce, share and consume information, yet our understanding of what it means to be a leader in this new, networked society has not kept pace. Join leaders from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Twitter, and Living Cities during this free webinar to understand how these trends are changing previous notions of leadership and learn more about ways your organization can harness new technologies to accelerate innovation, adaptation, and ultimately impact. This webinar is complimentary to viewers, thanks to the generous sponsorship of Living Cities.

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Related Story: Leading in a Hyperconnected World

The Future of Green Tech

May 31, 2011 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Clayton M. Christensen and L. Hunter Lovins

Corporate executives, entrepreneurs, environmentalists, and concerned citizens alike know that the key to solving business, environmental, and societal problems over the next generation rests on the success of green tech. But which green energy technologies will provide solutions to harness power from renewable, sustainable sources or reduce adverse human impact on the environment? Will solutions come from technologies such as solar, wind, and geothermal power, biofuels, and smart power grids, or hydrogen and electric vehicle propulsion? Join Clayton M. Christensen, Robert and Jane Cizik professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, and L. Hunter Lovins, president and founder of Natural Capitalism Solutions, for an interactive dialogue about the complex landscape of green tech investment, application, and implementation.

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Related Story: Picking Green Tech’s Winners and Losers

The Dragonfly Effect: Harnessing Social Media to Drive Social Change

March 31, 2011 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by Jennifer Aaker

People are clamoring for ways to use social media for social change. Join Jennifer Aaker, veteran of consumer psychology, marketing, and entrepreneurship, as she explains how to harness the incredible power of social media to make a difference by applying the ideas of The Dragonfly Effect. Aaker will discuss how to tap social media and consumer psychological insights to achieve a single, concrete goal.

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Related Story: The Dragonfly Effect

Design Thinking for Social Innovation

February 10, 2011 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by IDEO

Design thinking allows organizations to be more innovative, differentiate their offerings, and bring products and services to market faster. Nonprofits are also finding that design thinking encourages high-impact solutions to bubble up from below rather than being imposed from the top. Join Jocelyn Wyatt, coauthor of SSIR‘s “Design Thinking for Social Innovation,” as she updates her popular article from the Winter 2010 issue, drawing on new case studies from the work of IDEO, a design and innovation consultancy. Wyatt discusses the importance of innovation in the social sector and shares the process and tools of design thinking.

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Related Story: Design Thinking for Social Innovation

Working Wikily: Social Networks for Social Change

June 8, 2010 at 11:00 am Pacific
Presented by the Monitor Institute

There is a fundamental shift now occurring in the way people think, form groups, and do their work. The focus is moving from organizations to networks, and new tools are enabling more collective ways of working. Join us as the Monitor Institute’s Heather McLeod Grant and Diana Scearce discuss this, suggesting ways for organizations to get started working wikily.

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Related Story: Working Wikily