New Accelerator Supports Socially Conscious Ventures

Gone are the days of businesses born with the sole purpose of earning profits. Social entrepreneurship – which focuses on developing businesses that raise profits while also addressing social, environmental and cultural issues – are gaining momentum in today’s business landscape.

The rise of social entrepreneurship inspired the Rady School of Management’s newest business development hub – the Social Venture Accelerator.

Inspired by a need to support socially-conscious business endeavors, Lada Rasochova and Kim Davis King worked to create the latest Rady School installment in support of entrepreneurial pursuits dedicated to making the world a better place.

“Recognizing a need for a program geared toward developing and sustaining socially conscious businesses, the Rady School of Management launched the Social Venture Accelerator,” said Rasochova, executive director of the California Institute for Innovation and Development and director of the mystartupXX and StartR accelerators. “The establishment of this accelerator will pave the way for future innovative and social entrepreneurs to develop products, services and initiatives that will positively impact the world for years to come.”

The program consists of six sessions covering topics ranging from business model development to fundraising. The final session serves as a pitch presentation where participants will share the fruits of their labor with peers and potential investors.

King — co-director of StartR and mystartupxx and an adjunct professor at the Rady School – shared the benefits of the program.

“The workshops provide participants the opportunity to research, discuss and critically reflect upon the landscape and impact of social enterprises and non-for-profits,” she said. “We take a business approach to develop a social business model canvas and utilize advanced lean startups and customer development principles for social ventures. This hands-on workshop covers the techniques and methods.”

The Social Venture Accelerator is funded by the Center for Social Innovation and Impact – a center dedicated to inspire students and alumni to address the big issues and big challenges our society is facing. The development and launch of the accelerator is one of the actions that Rady is taking as part of our role in the broader Changemaker Campus plan at UC San Diego, which encourages the campus community to actively engage in serving the global community.

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