How Organizations Can Cross the Stagnation Chasm

Our world faces many big challenges, from disastrous weather patterns, to refugees without homes, to increasing inequality. To tackle these problems, we need to scale big ideas and unleash the power of social innovation. Fortunately, the opportunity for impact mirrors the immensity of the need. There are countless solutions and social innovators mobilizing to solve some of society’s most pressing problems. Unfortunately, many social innovations fail because they are unable to bridge the “stagnation chasm” — where proven ideas get stuck before they are able to maximize their impact.

Funders are equally eager to step in to help bring these solutions to scale, but there is a tremendous gap between the expectations of funders and the reality that changemakers face every day. The resources, ecosystem, and talent at for-profit companies are vastly different than those available to social innovators. We took at look at those three factors and the barriers that prevent innovations from scaling up and provide action steps that can help social innovations overcome the stagnation chasm and reach broader impact.

Read the full paper here (PDF)

This paper was originally published in the Stanford Social Innovation Review.

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