The Financial Access Initiative and MicroSave invites you to a free virtual conference on Reimagining Microfinance Around the World

Portfolios of the Poor: How the World’s Poor Live on $2 a Day broadened our understanding of how the global poor manage their financial lives, but how do we take these lessons and transform them into real, on-the-ground solutions for economic development? The Financial Access Initiative and MicroSave invites you to a free virtual conference on Reimagining Microfinance Around the World to address this question. On June 8-9, co-authors Daryl Collins, Jonathan Morduch, Stuart Rutherford, and Orlanda Ruthven, and MicroSave’s Graham A.N. Wright will be fielding questions and comments from conference registrants. There are plenty of ways to prepare for the conference. An inspiring introduction to the book can be seen in a podcast of Bob Christen, and key issues and findings from Portfolios research can be accessed in a series of Briefing Notes. Microfinance Podcast is also running a video series on the conference that features Sukhwinder Singh, Stuart Rutherford, Rich Rosenberg, Bill Easterly, Yaw Nyarko and Jonathan Morduch.

Registration is free! To join the virtual conference, please visit

Twitter’s foray into social good efforts with the launch of Hope140

Last month saw the latest Twitter foray into social good efforts with the launch of the new Hope140 initiative. Its #EndMalaria campaign over the past week featured the TwitPay platform for donations, creating a new call to action for Hope140. Twitter users participated in World Malaria Day by retweeting and donating $10. The Case Foundation matched donations with a $25,000 grant.

#EndMalaria demonstrated that Twitter can be more than an awareness mechanism for non-profits. Further, Twitter is using its Promoted Tweets feature as public service vehicle, launching with two charities; Room to Read, which is campaigning to promote the building of their 10,000th library, and Partners in Health. Now Twitter’s non-profit offering provides comprehensive capabilities, from click-throughs and retweets to bona fide donations and public service announcements.

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Can the world’s richest man feed the planet?

Interesting article on Bill Gates:

“Three-quarters of the world’s poorest people get their food and income by farming small plots of land,” Gates said. “So if we can make smallholder farming more productive and more profitable, we can have a massive impact on hunger and nutrition and poverty.”

That’s exactly what the first Green Revolution accomplished in the Latin America and Asia. “But it didn’t go far enough,” Gates said. “It didn’t go to Africa.”

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Bioneers 2009 Conference

It’s the 20th anniversary of the Bioneers Conference. This leading-edge forum on environment and social justice issues focuses on solutions inspired by nature and human ingenuity. Our goal is to turn education into action by connecting people with nature and each other.

At this critical time in history we are asking for you to collaboratively help us spread the word about this year’s Bioneers Conference to advance our society.

To this end, we have created multiple digital content assets, social media channels and offerings for your sites, readers, audiences, members, managers, employees, family and friends. We hope that you will post and share.

This EPK contains embeddable creative assets including: photos, logos, banners, Bioneers membership badges, videos, 10% off discount coupons, a live conference photo viewer, slideshows, influencer press kit offerings, flyers and much more.

We’re also thrilled to provide you the option of posting the Bioneers Live Webcast Video Player so that your audiences can view some of the thought-leader plenary lectures as they happen.

Events Details:

Here’s a 20% off link which also includes Free Bioneers’ Membership:

Application process for the 2010-2011 Class of Acumen Fund Fellows is now open!

The application process for the 2010-2011 Class of Acumen Fund Fellows is now open!

If you know exceptional individuals who should be part of our 2010-2011 class, we hope you will encourage them to apply. Please forward this email liberally throughout your networks so that we reach the strongest and most diverse candidate pool.

Applications will be accepted online until 11:59pm EST on Thursday, November 5, 2009. Detailed information about the program and application process, as well as the bios of current and past fellows, can be found on our website. To apply, or to send more information to others you know who might be interested, please click here.

We are looking for dedicated individuals with the practical skills, the creativity, the empathy and the leadership potential to affect change by leveraging market-based solutions to create social impact. Acumen Fund Fellows are drawn from a pool of talented, passionate people from all geographies, sectors, backgrounds and ethnicities.

Since graduating its first class of Fellows in 2007, the Fellows Program has continued to grow and expand, using the experiences of each class to continue building a unique training curriculum specifically focused on leadership and social enterprises. Fellows Alumni have called the program a life-changing experience, and one that allowed them to build critical business skills and a better understanding of the challenges involved in serving low-income consumers around the world.

Congrats to Patrick Corvington on White House Nod!

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Here’s the news via echoing green:

Echoing Green would like to congratulate board member, Patrick Corvington, who, today, who was nominated by President Obama to the position of Chief Executive Officer at the Corporation for National and Community Service. For those of us in the world of social innovation, who have worked closely with Patrick over the years, we applaud the administration’s selection of this visionary and experienced leader who understands well the roles of indigenous and next-generation leadership, community problem solving, and cross-sector partnerships in community transformation.

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2009 Social Enterprise Conference: From Vision to Practice

2009 Social Enterprise Conference
From Vision to Practice
Friday, October 9th
7:45 AM – 7:00 PM
New York

Columbia Business School’s Social Enterprise Program and International Development Clubs will host the 8th Annual Social Enterprise Conference. This year’s Conference, From vision to practice, will be held on Friday, October 9, 2009 at Lerner hall of the Columbia University’s Morningside Campus in New York City. The keynote speaker this year is Craig R. Barrett, retired CEO/Chairman of Board INTEL CORPORATION.

Microfinance India Summit 2009

Check out the annual Microfinance India Summit which acts as a global meeting ground for policy-makers, practitioners, promoters and researchers to delve into and address fundamental concerns related to microfinance in India. This year’s conference is being held from 26 to 28 October 2009 in New Delhi.

ACCESS Development Services, a not-for-profit company based in New Delhi that assists the growing microfinance sector through streamlined and structured services to emerging MFIs and supports the enabling environment through the Microfinance India platform (

Administrative news

In case you read this blog only through RSS, we decided to refresh the site.  Some content and links needed to be moved around. Please let me know if you spot any issues.  You can reach us via the contact form.

Also, we’ve doing some refreshing in the office and have to give a shout out to a new office product that we’ve been trying out- this wifi enabled Brother laser printer (which replaced a Brother laser printer we loved but it didn’t have wifi). We’ve been plugging in our laptops to print, which was a big hassle, but no more of that!

India’s First Social Enterprise and Investment Forum, Aims to Shape the Future of Inclusive Capitalism

More than 300 social entrepreneurs, a plethora of international and regional investors, funding agencies, corporate houses, and philanthropic organizations will come together on Tuesda, April 28, 2009 in Mumbai in an event that will change the landscape of social investing in India. Come and be a part of this landmark event!

Sankalp (English: Pledge or Determination) is India’s first Social Enterprise and Investment Forum with the primary goal of bringing together various stakeholders sharing a common conviction that capital should be invested to create multiple bottom-line returns (financial, social and environmental) and not exclusively financial (profit-maximizing) or social (philanthropic) returns.

Set against the background in India, where 924.1 million Indians (nearly 95% of India’s population) have incomes below USD 3000 per annum in local purchasing power, and 78% of this from rural India, India has been able to clock growth rates between 6.5% and 7% despite the slowdown. India presents us with questions of development coupled with the unlimited potential of an emerging market.

The event endeavours to recognise and award truly impactful enterprises and catalyze investments in sectors such as agriculture and rural innovations, affordable education, healthcare inclusion, environment and clean energy, and highly scalable social models.

At a time when investors are looking for sustainable returns, Sankalp presents opportunities to engage with the emerging class of impact investors and connect with evolving yet investible ideas in high impact sectors. The primary aim is to create a holistic ecosystem to facilitate catalytic growth in these recession proof sectors which yield lower longer term returns.

Sankalp 2009 will feature a stellar line up of thought leaders, luminaries, and speakers including Naina Lal Kidawai, CEO of HSBC India, Vijay Mahajan, CEO of Basix, Anthony Bugg Levine of Rockefeller Foundation, Gurcharan Das (former MD P&G), Sarath Naru of Venture East, and Vineet Rai, founder Aavishkar.

Sankalp Forum is the brainchild of Intellecap – a pioneer in the multiple bottom line investment industry. The key partners for the inaugural 2009 event include Rockefeller Foundation from the US, Rianta Capital from UK, National Bank for Rural and Agriculture Development (NABARD) and Rural Innovations Network (RIN).

Sankalp Forum will be held in Mumbai, India, on April 28th at the Taj Land’s End and additional details can be found at