Social Entrepreneurs: Real Problem Solvers for the World's Challenges

Submitted by: John Converse Townsend on 11/28/12

Social entrepreneurship is blowing up, particularly in the United States. From 1995 to 2005, the number of non-profits registered with the IRS grew by 53 percent.

What does an increase in ventures that blend profits with purpose mean for philanthropy? And how can the everyday changemaker use better business models to overcome barriers to change?

The answers to those questions—and more—are what Ruth A. Shapiro set out to discover in editing “The Real Problem Solvers: Social Entrepreneurs in America.”

Pamela Hartigan, director at the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at the University of Oxford, called the book a “wonderful introduction to social entrepreneurship in the United States and the growing ecosystem of organizations committed to supporting it."

“Ruth Shapiro frames this book with an engaging and insightful account of the critical influences that have spurred social entrepreneurs to take on some of our society's most challenging problems," said Hartigan. "Regardless of the problems that these pragmatic visionaries seek to address, this book shows that their magic lies in combining innovation, resourcefulness, and opportunity—with an unwillingness to give into setbacks.”

“The Real Problem Solvers” features question-and-answer sections with long-time supporters of a vibrant citizen sector including Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus, Acumen Fund's Jacqueline Novogratz, Ashoka's very own Bill Drayton, and Ashoka Fellow and CEO of Root Capital, Willy Foote. These leaders, and others, delve into topics like why social innovation is important, how to create a stronger, more supportive changemaking infrastructure, and where collaborative entrepreneurship can have the greatest impact.

It's a rock solid introduction to social entrepreneurship. Grab your copy today.