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Social Enterprise News

March 21, 2006

Spring Newsletter - Nonprofit Venture Consulting in Santiago

Over winter break first-year MBA students work on a pro bono consulting project with NESsT.

NESst Student Team

Over winter break first-year students Lian de Castro ’07, Giselle Leung ’07, Lauren Franks ’07 and Susana Lopez Lopez ’07  (pictured)  flew to Chile’s capital to meet with the Nonprofit Enterprise Social Sustainability Team (NESsT), with which they had been collaborating for the previous four months.

NESsT’s mission is to find lasting solutions to systemic poverty and social injustice through the development of mission-driven businesses that increase the financial sustainability and social change impact of civil society organizations.

The Columbia team’s specific project was to develop a set of social enterprise implementation tools that will be used to train NESsT’s portfolio organizations to effectively launch their ventures, grow and become sustainable. These tools would create a set of concepts, processes, guides and templates to be used by hundreds of nonprofits around Latin America and Central Europe that have already developed their business plans for revenue-generating ventures.

The team developed three individual toolkits based on independent research and their professional backgrounds. Leung and Lopez Lopez focused on creating a comprehensive and detailed financial toolkit with budgeting, reporting and forecasting models. Franks drew on her background in human resources to develop a set of best practices and policies, and De Castro created a toolkit for marketing strategies.

“We worked extremely hard and spent more than one all-nighter working on our tools,” says team member Lopez Lopez, “but we had an incredibly rewarding experience of witnessing firsthand the impact of our work while in Chile.”

The team’s travel costs were supported by the Social Enterprise Program through its International Development Consulting Project Travel Fund.


2014 Social Enterprise Conference

Millennials Rising: What's Next for Sustainability?

When: October 31, 2014,
8:30 am-6:00pm

The Marriott Marquis
1535 Broadway, New York, NY 10036
Between 45th and 46th Streets
New York, NY 10036

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The annual Social Enterprise Conference at Columbia Business School brings together thought leaders from across private, nonprofit, public, and academic sectors to share best practices, debate critical issues, and collaborate on innovative concepts to inspire change. Through interactive sessions, keynote speakers, workshops, a pitch competition, and networking opportunities, the conference presents guests with the opportunity to partake in the most important business and societal conversation of this new era. For updates on speakers and sessions, please visit the conference website.

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Summer Fellowship Program

Microfinance models help women of Burkina Faso

Read about the experiences of our summer fellows as they help create social and environmental value.


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