SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Twenty socially minded entrepreneurs from around the world have been chosen to receive full scholarships to participate in the ninth annual Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI™) at Santa Clara University.
The signature program of the Center for Science, Technology, and Society at Santa Clara University, GSBI is an eight-month program for social entrepreneurs, combining online and in-residence exercises with training and mentoring from academic leaders and Silicon Valley executives over an intensive eight-month period.
The ventures run by GSBI participants provide essential goods and services to the poor, and often act as catalysts for economic growth in their home regions.
Products and services being developed by the 2011 GSBI class include: biogas-powered milk coolers for Ugandan farmers; microfranchise training and employment opportunities for slum youth in Kenya; probiotics to improve health in Mexico; solar-powered chicken and egg production in Haiti; and women-created fashion and furniture from recycled garbage in the Philippines.
Social entrepreneurs graduate from the GSBI with practical and strategic business tools to allow their organizations to “scale”, meaning they increase revenue faster than expenses. The final, in-residence phase of the program takes place on Santa Clara University’s campus August 7-19, culminating with a business plan summary presentation on August 18.
“We are tremendously enthused by the quality and breadth of this year’s class of social entrepreneurs,” commented Thane Kreiner, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Center for Science, Technology, and Society. “Their innovations in technologies, business models, and solving contextual challenges in the delivery of goods and services to impoverished communities are inspiring and exciting, with potential to positively impact the lives of tens of millions of people.”
The 20 organizations are headquartered in more than 14 different countries, including eight from Africa, reflecting the global nature of the GSBI. Other geographies represented include India, the Philippines, Haiti, Central America, and Southeast Asia.
This year, over half of the 2011 GSBI class is focused on developing or distributing cleaner and cheaper sources of energy for the nearly 1.5 billion people in the world who have no access to reliable, grid power. The full 2011 GSBI class list can be found at www.scu.edu/sts/gsbi.
Enterprises that have graduated from the GSBI program have, collectively, gone on to serve or benefit tens of millions of people. A list of alumni can be found at http://www.scu.edu/sts/gsbi/socialentrepreneurs/index.cfm.
GSBI is currently funded in part by a grant from the Skoll Foundation and individual donors. Corporations, individuals, and foundations interested in supporting the GSBI and helping social entrepreneurs are invited to contact Tomitha Blake, firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Center for Science, Technology, and Society
The mission of the Center for Science, Technology, and Society (CSTS) is to promote the use of science and technology to benefit underserved communities worldwide, primarily by working with socially-minded entrepreneurs. The CSTS implements its mission through its signature program, the Global Social Benefit Incubator, the Frugal Innovation Lab and its numerous educational and public engagement activities. More information can be found at http://www.scu.edu/sts.
About Santa Clara University
Santa Clara University, a comprehensive Jesuit, Catholic university located 40 miles south of San Francisco in California’s Silicon Valley, offers its more than 8,800 students rigorous undergraduate curricula in arts and sciences, business, theology, and engineering, plus master’s and law degrees and engineering Ph.D.s. Distinguished nationally by one of the highest graduation rates among all U.S. master’s universities, California’s oldest operating higher education institution demonstrates faith-inspired values of ethics and social justice. For more information, see www.scu.edu.