01 Mar 2013


Two Decades of Social Progress


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The Social Enterprise Initiative began in 1993 with a pioneering mission: develop new insights and innovative approaches to contribute to the well-being of society. Driven by the vision of John Whitehead (MBA 1947) and the leadership of then-Dean John McArthur and Professors Jim Austin and Kash Rangan, HBS adopted a problem-focused approach toward understanding the managerial, leadership, and governance challenges associated with driving sustained, high-impact social change.

For the past 20 years, SEI has been dedicated to that cause, leveraging the talent and pioneering spirit of HBS to improve institutions dedicated to creating social value. The initiative's impact on the School has been profound. HBS faculty have written nearly 1,000 cases, articles, and books on social enterprise since the initiative's inception, and almost 100 faculty are currently involved with social enterprise research and teaching. More than 500 students have enrolled in social enterprise electives this year, and more than 300 are currently involved in the Social Enterprise Club—one of the largest clubs on campus. Alumni, too, continue to apply the lessons, with one-third serving on nonprofit boards, and alumni clubs offering $10 million of pro bono work annually.


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Featured Alumni

Featured Alumni

John Whitehead
Class of MBA 1947
Class of  
Class of MBA 1968, Section E

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