All-time favorite aRTICLES/POSTs (that i wrote)
In this section I pull together resources that I find valuable, some of which I have created or written, and many others that I just find to be super-useful. Let me start with some of my own blog posts that I refer people to the most or have people asked him about: Click on the topic and it will lead you to the post.
What impact investors could learn from microfinance. Perhaps my most widely read blog post ever.
How to manage a CEO/Founder transition successfully. I wrote this when my transition out of the CEO role at Grameen Foundation was almost complete. I am happy to say that this process was one of the rare smooth transitions of a founder out of the CEO seat.
How to get your first job in international humanitarian work and social enterprise. I had been frustrated for years giving advice to young job seekers so I convened eight people who had been creative and successful in breaking in and I published an edited transcript of what they said to me, and each other, over nearly three hours.
What recent microfinance evaluations really mean. This is based on a speech I have at a World Bank conference that went against the grain of what virtually everyone else was saying – and I still think it is correct.
What microfinance could be if we reimagined what is was for in the first place. This article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review anticipated the microfinance crises of 2010-2015 and pointed to a way to have avoided them.
Review of two memoirs by social entrepreneurs: Rupert Scofield and Jacqueline Novogratz. Two very different books that are equally entertaining and have great insights about what it takes to lead social change.
My tribute to the Microcredit Summit Campaign. I think this Campaign had enormous impact despite its meager budget, and when it came to an end I had no choice but to try to publish something about its legacy.
Behavioral economics and what it means for microfinance and development work generally. I read the book Scarcity after hearing one of its co-authors speak in London, and then wrote this review (actually part two of two) about what I thought it meant.
Other great Resources (mostly written by others)
In this section, I share links to information about some of my favorite organizations, places, books, columnists, and authors. At the very end, I list my five favorite articles (including one podcast) that I use in my nonprofit management courses and workshops.
Top organization (though I am horribly biased) working on global poverty. I remain strongly supportive of Grameen Foundation. In fact, I ran the Richmond marathon in November 2018 as a fund-raiser for GF.
Best survey of what research actually says about the impact of microfinance on poverty. In 2015, as CEO of Grameen Foundation I commissioned this meta-analysis of what all the studies of microfinance said. (I had also done the same thing in 2005 and 2010.) The most recent study was supported and endorsed by other leading microfinance organizations, including Accion. The author, Professor Kathleen Odell, had complete editorial control so that the independence and credibility of the analysis could be ensured.
Top group (by far) working on economic justice through microfinance in the United States. Grameen America has thrived under the leadership of Andrea Jung, Professor Muhammad Yunus, Shah Newaz, and others.
Favorite book on social entrepreneurship and the role of nonprofits in society. I love this book by my friends Susan Davis and David Bornstein and recommend it constantly.
Most exciting organization promoting a hybrid between business and charity called “social business.” The concept of social business, developed by my mentor Dr. Muhammad Yunus, is starting to change the world and how people think about solving social problems. Here is another organization based in Europe that he started which is doing complementary work. And here is a link to a book he wrote about the social business revolution.
Nice review of my latest book by Alex Fiorillo, a professional colleague and rising star, published on the Center for Financial Inclusion blog.
Favorite university institute advancing the teaching of social value creation in education. I am proud to be an affiliated faculty of the Do Good Institute at the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland at College Park.
Favorite citizen’s advocacy organization working on global poverty. RESULTS got me started in activism and I remain a financial supporter and big fan.
Video (mainly audio) of the speeches at the farewell gala marking the end of my time as CEO of Grameen Foundation. This was a blast. GF sure sent me off right! The dancing after the speeches was even better.
Favorite cultural exchange program that allows American students and teachers to travel abroad and foreign students to come to the U.S. My entire career was shaped by being selected as a Fulbright Fellow to Bangladesh in 1988-89. I am also involved as a donor and volunteer in the Fulbright Association, which is a network of past Fulbright scholars and friends of the program that advances Fulbright ideals.
Best website on travel, working frequent flyer programs, etc. Chock full of useful information for leisure travelers and especially “road warriors.”
My guide to Key West. I wrote this during the winter holidays of 2013 since so many people asked my advice about what to do in Key West, since people knew I loved it so much. I wanted a place to point them all to, and this served the purpose nicely. I have kept it reasonably updated since then.
Favorite Debate (That I Was Part Of). I had occasion to participate in a debate with Vikram Akula, the founder of SKS (an Indian microfinance institution), on the eve of the Indian and global microfinance crises. Here is a link to the transcript; the link above is to the video. Sadly, I anticipated the crisis to come while Vikram expressed high confidence that everything was fine.
The cooking/recipe website I rely on the most. In recent years I got into cooking and this resource has been invaluable.
A great opportunity to volunteer in your community and help neglected and abused children. I learned about the CASA program (known as Guardian ad Litem in some states) through my students and have been an active volunteer since completing my training in August 2018.
Terrific group working on climate change at the state level in the U.S. Climate change is one of the defining issues of our times. Climate X Change is one of many groups doing outstanding, pragmatic work to get the situation under control.
Favorite book on teaching. I try to at least skim this every time before I teach a course.
Best conservative blogger on U.S. politics (speaking as someone who is not conservative). Jennifer Rubin is so smart and hard-hitting – she almost makes me want to become a conservative!
Top centrist columnist on politics, culture, sociology, etc. I always make time to read David Brooks’ column in the NY Times – very thoughtful. I loved his book The Road to Character.
Favorite liberal columnist: Dana Milbank. He is also married to a college friend. His analysis always informs and frequently inspires.
My favorite articles (including one podcast) about nonprofit leadership and management that I assign my students and are freely available on the Internet are:
Heather McLeod Grant & Leslie R. Crutchfield. “Creating High-Impact Nonprofits.” Stanford Social Innovation Review. Fall 2007. http://www.ssireview.org/articles/entry/creating_high_impact_nonprofits
John Kania and Mark Kramer, “Collective Impact”, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Winter 2011, http://www.ssireview.org/articles/entry/collective_impact
Podcast of Abra Annes being interviewed by Joan Garry, “How to Engage Millennials”: https://www.joangarry.com/ep47-engage-millennials-abra-annes/
David Eisner, Robert T. Grimm, Jr., Shannon Maynard, and Susannah Washburn. “The New Volunteer Workforce.” Stanford Social Innovation Review. Winter 2009, 32-37. http://www.ssireview.org/articles/entry/the_new_volunteer_workforce/
Jeri Eckhart-Queenan and Matthew Forti, “Measurement as Learning: What Nonprofit CEOs, Board Members, and Philanthropists Need to Know to Keep Improving,” Bridgespan Group, April 2011, http://www.bridgespan.org/Publications-and-Tools/Global-Development/Section1/Measurement-as-Learning-What-Nonprofit-CEOs,-B.aspx#.UfLpTY1QHzM