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Rippling: How Social Entrepreneurs Spread Innovation Throughout the World

ISBN: 978-1-118-13859-5
288 pages
March 2012, Jossey-Bass
Rippling: How Social Entrepreneurs Spread Innovation Throughout the World (1118138597) cover image


Principles for driving significant change throughout an entire system

Drawing on the knowledge and experience of working with hundreds the world's top social change leaders in all fields, Beverly Schwartz presents a model for change based on five proven principles that any individual leader or organization can apply to bring about deep, lasting and systematic change. Rippling shows how to activate the type of change that is needed to address the critical challenges that threaten to destroy the foundations of our society and planet in these increasingly turbulent times.

These actionable principles are brought to life by compelling real-life stories. Schwartz provides a road map that allows anyone to become a changemaker.

  • Presents some of today's most innovative and effective approaches to solving social and environmental challenges
  • Offers a vision of social entrepreneurs as role models, catalysts, enablers and recruiters who spread waves system changing solutions throughout society
  • The author offers a model of change that begins with the end result in mind
  • First book from an insider at Ashoka, the foremost global organization on social change through social entrepreneurship

Rippling clearly demonstrates how and when empathy, creativity, passion, and persistence are combined; significant, life-altering progress is indeed possible.

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Table of Contents




PART ONE Restructuring Institutional Norms 18

Reflections by Esther Dyson

1 Power to the People—Germany 22

How Elektrizitatswerke Sch¨onau works with communities to buy back, manage, and control electric grids so it can replace nuclear power with renewable sources of energy.

2 The Teaching of Teaching—United States 32

Changing the dynamics of how and what teachers teach; appreciating the vision of the Center for Inspired Teaching.

3 From Servitude to Solution—India 42

How the Rickshaw Bank is reinventing the lives and livelihoods of rickshaw drivers.

4 Lifting the Veil for Women Who Don’t Exist—Nepal 54

Removing age-old restrictions on women who lose their rights, property, and freedom after the death of their husband; understanding how Women’s Human Rights is changing the face of Asia.

PART TWO Changing Market Dynamics 64

Reflections by Peter M. Senge

5 Using MicroConsignment to Open a Door to Economic Inclusion—Guatemala 68

Exploring the way Community Enterprise Solutions offers ‘‘a basket of solutions’’ to rural villagers by lowering the cost of economic entry for suppliers.

6 Dialing Maize 411—Kenya 84

Using technology to connect small-scale farmers with real-time competitive prices; how the Kenya Agricultural Commodities Exchange improves the lives of small farmers.

7 Stimulating Fiscal Vibrancy by Creating a New Economy—Brazil 94

Stimulating local economies by creating a new currency and a system of community banks for low-income citizens; the story of Bancos Palmas.

PART THREE Using Market Forces to Create Social Value 104

Reflections by William Jefferson Clinton

8 From Garbage to Gold—Peru 108

How Ciudad Saludable creates microenterprises around garbage collection and increases the economic viability and positive health outcomes of communities in which they operate.

9 A Better Model of Capitalism—United States 120

Ensuring a fair price for farmers by transforming global trade practices; the influence of FairTrade USA on American consumers and its impact on families around the world.

10 Shit Business Is Serious Business—Nigeria 134

Building a culture of sanitation and hygiene in crowded urban areas in Africa and Asia; why DMT Mobile Toilets is literally changing the landscape and much more.

11 Putting the Public Back in Public Housing—France 146

Applying a quintuple bottom line to eco-housing, Chenelet energizes low-income neighborhoods while creating community with dignity and grace.

PART FOUR Advancing Full Citizenship 156

Reflections by Geeta Rao Gupta

12 Financial Freedom for Children—Global 160

Equipping a generation of youth to take charge of their financial survival, Aflatoun balances the scales in favor of their future.

13 Overcoming the Barriers Between Us and Them—Germany 170

Redefining disability as ability and otherness as likeness; the story of Dialogue Social Enterprise, creator of the ‘‘Dialogue in the Dark’’ experience.

14 Autistic Abilities—Denmark 180

How Specialisterne (Specialist People Foundation) is transforming autism from a handicap to a competitive advantage.

15 Crazy Becomes Normal—Argentina 190

Reconnecting the mentally ill with society and vice versa, La Colifata uses a weekly radio show broadcast by the patients as the link.

PART FIVE Cultivating Empathy 200

Reflections by Arianna Huffington

16 From Babies to Behavioral Shift—Canada 204

The effectiveness of Roots of Empathy in ending aggressive behavior among children.

17 Cultivating Champions of Interfaith

Action—United States 214

Building widespread public support for interfaith youth work on University campuses; embracing the mission of the Interfaith Youth Core.

18 Beautiful Resistance—Palestine 224

How Alrowwad creates a space to express normality in conflict zones.

19 Conclusion: Turning What Is and What If into What Can Be 236






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Author Information

Beverly Schwartz is vice president of global marketing at Ashoka, the world's largest association of leading social entrepreneurs. Schwartz is an "entrepreneurial" behavioral scientist and has made her career in the field of social marketing. She has devoted her career to working on some of the world's most challenging societal issues, including smoking and drug prevention, gender equity, educational and environmental reform, and HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention. She holds an MS degree from Queens College, City University of New York. Please visit her at www.changemakers.com/Rippling.
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Press Release

April 10, 2012
Rippling: How Social Entrepreneurs Spread Innovation Throughout the World

With the world’s population increasing to a whopping 6.6 billion people, global problems are escalating as well: economic disparity, resource depletion, religious and cultural intolerance, unequal educational opportunities – to name only a few. Major problems call for major solutions.

In Rippling, Beverly Schwartz discusses these problems and the people who are beginning to solve them using contemporary and innovative solutions. These successful social entrepreneurs care about social and environmental change and work toward creating lasting change. But Rippling isn’t just a list of innovative social entrepreneurs for us to admire, it is a call to action. Each of us has the ability to create social change, whether big or small.

Rippling: How Social Entrepreneurs Spread Innovation Throughout the Word (Jossey-Bass; 978-1-118-13859-5; eBook available; April 2012) brings to life stories and examples of some of the most innovative and successful social entrepreneurs in the world and shows how anyone can help bring about lasting social change.

 Rippling presents a model for change based on five strategic ways that social entrepreneurs change social systems  -  which are proven principles that any individual leader or organization can apply to bringing about deep, lasting and systematic change. Illustrated and brought to life by compelling real life examples of social change leaders across all fields, the framework in this book will offer a roadmap that allows anyone to become a "changemaker."

After introducing the five principles model, each chapter uses compelling real life examples to illustrate how each is used by social entrepreneurs in driving significant change that not only offers solutions but changes whole systems. Rippling presents some of today's most innovative and effective approaches to solving social and environmental challenges; envisioning social entrepreneurs as role models, catalysts, enablers and recruiters who spread waves system changing solutions throughout society in a “rippling effect” - like a rock in a pond.


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