Innovation ScoutsStrengthening Local Networks to Identify, Support, and Promote High Impact Potential Social Enterprises
What if you could have a network of well-trained men and women on the ground in the developing world, searching for projects and enterprises you’d like to support? Root Change has developed a unique global program that does just that: providing access to projects and social enterprises, worldwide and then using cutting-edge crowd sourcing technologies to vet these projects and social enterprises for funding and partnerships.
With initial seed funding from the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), Root Change developed a program linking local networks and knowledge of innovative social enterprises across the globe with a community of social impact investors and technical assistance organizations. Through training and support by Root Change, these networks of "Innovation Scouts" harness the collective intellectual power of indigenous firms, local social investment funds, consultants, individual entrepreneurs, foundation staff, and non-profit institutions worldwide to discover, screen, vet, support, and promote social enterprises.
Root Change works with Innovation Scouts in providing training in social impact investing, social enterprise identification, screening, and support for local social enterprises. We have developed a platform to link Innovation Scouts and the social enterprises they "sponsor" with the capacity or business development support they need to grow to scale and attract investment. The initiative also focuses on building and strengthening peer-to-peer collaboration between Innovation Scouts and other local service providers to build the local social impact investment sector. The initiative takes an end-to-end view of social enterprise (SE) opportunity identification and screening by investing in infrastructure, people, systems and technology to reduce the transaction costs associated with finding worthy social enterprises for investment.
Root Change Innovation Scouts are active in Tanzania and Vietnam, with a total of 38 scouts trained: 23 in Vietnam, and 15 in Tanzania. The Root Change Innovation Scouts Platform now hosts 19 unique social enterprises, and receives daily page visits from more 40 countries across the world.
How It WorksScroll over the graphic to learn about our approach.
Watch the Innovation Scouts Video to Learn MoreNews and Updates9-1-2011 Root Change to travel to Kenya and Tanzania to meet with Innovation Scouts for program learning and evaluation workshop, and strategic planning, including Innovation Scouts program expansion into Kenya and Uganda.
5-1-2011 Root Change Innovation Scouts Tanzania planning Opportunity Screening workshops in Dodoma and Arusha for June and July of 2011.
3-20-2011 Root Change now has two Field Program Coordinators on the ground, one to Tanzania, and one to Vietnam, working to coordinate activities and new Opportunity Screening Workshops (OSW) in both countries.
Links and ResourcesRoot Change Innovation Scouts PlatformInnovation Scouts Brochure DownloadInnovation Scouts Annual Report: 2009-2010