New in Harvard Business Review: Innovating for Shared Value

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New in Harvard Business Review: Innovating for Shared Value

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5 ingredients for innovating for #sharedvalue: New in @Harvardbiz @SVInitiative @VBockstette #socinn
Tuesday, September 10, 2013 - 10:00am

CONTENT: Press Release

Innovating for Shared Value

We’ve all heard of promising social innovation programs that don’t make it past the pilot phase. That’s because corporate social innovation is extremely challenging to implement at scale. To break through entrenched corporate behaviorsthose that are obstacles to social innovationcompanies must go out of their comfort zone on several levels.

A number of visionary companies have broken through these barriers to achieve success. BD’s dramatic reduction of needlestick injuries, Nestlé’s solutions for nutrition, water and rural development, and Dow’s ever-growing suite of products that achieve breakthroughs to world challenges are a few examples of large-scale social innovation.

FSG managing directors Marc Pfitzer, Valerie Bockstette, and a team of consultants studied more than 30 companies that innovate for shared value and deliver vast social benefits and business value. Their findings, featured in "Innovating for Shared Value" in the September issue of Harvard Business Review, show that companies consistently rely on the same five mutually reinforcing ingredients:

  • Purpose: re-stating corporate purpose around meeting societal needs

  • Defined need: focusing efforts on a well-researched, distinct need

  • Measurement: measuring value creation for both business and society

  • Co-creation: bringing in partners at different phases in deliberate and mutually beneficial ways

  • Innovation structure: being intentional about where in their organizations to house and nurture social innovation

A deficiency in any one of these ingredients stops corporate social innovation in its tracks, but the article illustrates how companies such as HP, Dow, BD, Intel, Mars, and others have managed to bring social innovation into their businesses and have profited as a result.

For more information about the Harvard Business Review article, please contact Michelle Morgan-Nelsen.


About The Shared Value Initiative

The Shared Value Initiative is a global community of practice to drive adoption and implementation of shared value strategies among leading companies, civil society, and government organizations. The Shared Value Initiative works with partners to curate, develops tools to guide shared value implementation, convenes practitioners to promote best practices, and expands the network of Affiliated Professional Services firms that aim to provide customized shared value strategy and support. Join the community at

Keywords: Business & Trade | Business | Business & Trade | FSG | Harvard Business Review | Innovation | Shared Value | Shared Value Initiative | Technology | Volunteerism & Community Engagement | social innovation

CONTENT: Press Release