Social Entrepreneurship Courses at Yale School of Management

Social Entrepreneurship Electives at Yale University School of Management

Core electives:

Business of Not-for-Profit Management


This course is a general introduction to not for profit management, with heavy emphasis on practical application. How do not for profit organizations actually function? How do they attract “customers?” How do these companies grow when there are no owners with financial incentives to grow the business? What are the core elements of a “good” not for profit company? What are the metrics for determining the health of a company without profit? And, why would anybody work for such a crazy place? The assumption of this course is that students are interested in careers, internships, and/or board positions at not for profit companies. Students will be exposed to theory and criticism of the sector as well as real-world application via case studies and occasional guest speakers. This course will meet weekly for 3 hours. In addition to class work, students will have to work in study groups once a week. The course materials will be a combination of HBS case studies, books, actual organizational materials and IRS filings. This class may not be taken in addition to MGT 527 Strategic Management of Nonprofit Organizations.

Doing Business in the Developing World


This course examines economic strategies for non-profit and for-profit organizations and firms operating in the developing world. The first half of the course focuses on conducting business in environments with weak or deficient institutions, including corruption, political instability, lack of contract enforceability and poor investor protection. The course will primarily use quantitative economic and game theoretic analysis to examine these issues, and we will heavily draw on microeconomic analysis taught in the first year (or in undergraduate intermediate-level economics courses). The second half of the course will explore the role of non-profits, NGOs and multi-lateral institutions in the process of development. We will study credit market failures and the gap filled by micro-credit institutions. We will learn some strategies to evaluate the desirability and success of development projects in social marketing, poverty reduction, and microfinance. We will use the tools of economics to analyze contentious international policy issues such as natural resource exploitation, the free trade of goods including environmental goods (e.g. waste and pollution), intellectual property protection, and labor rights.

Nonprofit Organizations Clinic


This clinical workshop will serve the needs of nonprofit organizations, nascent and established, that require help in the process of organization and incorporation, in obtaining tax exemption, and solving ongoing legal problems — organizations that cannot afford to retain private counsel. The class will meet as a group five or six times during the term. Crossed with LAW 20051. This course is held at the Law School and will follow the Law School academic calendar

Financial Statements of Nonprofit Organizations


This course focuses on financial aspects of nonprofit organizations, beginning with their financial reports. The course focuses on (1) the financial reporting concepts and standards that are applicable to nonprofit organizations; (2) ratio and other summary indicators used by analysts to evaluate the financial condition and financial performance of nonprofit organizations; and (3) the analysis and interpretation of financial statements of selected nonprofit organizations.

Financial Reporting


This course extends the understanding of financial statements developed in MGT 402 by a) exploring the generally accepted accounting principles that underlie financial statements and b) understanding what can be gleaned from those statements. While the focus is on reporting in the United States, international examples are also considered.

Philanthropic Foundations


This course will examine the history and practice of philanthropic foundations in the United States from the establishment of the Peabody Education Fund in 1867, through the rise of large general-purpose foundations in the first decades of the twentieth century, to the major reshaping of foundations that occurred in the wake of the 1969 Tax Reform Act. The course will examine the practices of independent, family, corporate and community foundations and will explore, in detail, foundation governance structures, program design, grant decision-making processes, and evaluation procedures. Particular attention will be paid to the interrelations between foundations and government and to foundations’ evolving philanthropic missions and strategies. The course will also analyze important debates in the field about issues such as program versus project support, the value of “venture” philanthropy, and the extent to which foundations must be accountable and transparent. Course work will include case studies, individual and group projects. This course is open to 2nd year students only.

Designers Designing Design


This course offers students the opportunity to be design clients, and to acquire the skills and experience necessary to use design to shape and manage products, programs, initiatives, and campaigns. Two working designers will explore design as a methodology, a way of working in modern organizations — corporations, foundations, magazines, schools, even cities. Beginning with an overview of contemporary “design thinking,” the course will survey far-ranging examples where design has been used as a means of innovation, change, message, and influence. Cases will include corporate, retail and non-profit identity; content-rich media and editorial projects; and social and political initiatives. Weekly assignments will involve writing design briefs for real world projects, considering strategic goals, organizational strengths, and consumer and public need. The course combines hands-on exercises, lectures, readings, and cases. Guest lecturers will include well-known designers, as well as clients involved in live cases.

Nonprofit Public Management Program Evaluation


This course introduces students to the concepts and tools used to evaluate programs and policies. The course focuses on issues that arise when evaluating programs, using programs offered by non-profit and governmental organizations as case studies. In teams, students will work with a local community agency throughout the semester in designing a program logic model and a detailed evaluation plan for one of the agency’s programs. Undergraduate students are welcome.

Other related courses:

Social Media Management


In the past ten years, we have witnessed a tremendous growth in social media: social networking sites, online consumer forums, and online consumer review sites (for example sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Amazon review pages, and blogs). Note that here I define social media very broadly – as any product-related communication where the medium are the consumers. In other words, we address the issue of how a firm can optimally manage consumer social interactions. A manager who plans on actively managing social media, needs to have the following fundamental skills: 1. She needs to understand consumer behavior. Consumers are susceptible to social influences and trust their friends’ advice. On the other hand, consumers are also highly skeptical of obvious marketing efforts. This makes the design of a social media strategy very different from a traditional communication strategy. 2. She needs to understand how information travels through social networks. A word of mouth campaign entails a loss of control by the firm – the information will only travel as far as the consumers are willing to spread it. Note that this is in sharp contrast to a traditional communication campaign where a firm can essentially guarantee exposure levels. 3. She needs to understand how to implement a social media campaign. What are the goals of a social media campaign? Does the firm intend to simply measure and observe social interactions or does it plan to actively manage them? How can a firm optimally partner with an agency to design its social media strategy? What are the best practices in the field? 4. Finally, she needs to integrate the firm’s social media strategy with the over-all communication strategy. This course will use insights from social network theory, word of mouth research, and communication management to explore how a firm can optimize its social media communication strategy.

Behavioral Perspectives on Management


Good managerial decision making requires both (1) the ability to predict how others (consumers, employees, competitors, beneficiaries) will decide and behave, and (2) an appreciation of one’s own biases, shortcomings, and behavioral tendencies. Toward this aim, behavioral researchers in psychology, marketing, economics, finance, organizational behavior, and political science have studied how people actually make decisions and how they actually behave in real-world contexts. This research has revealed how people are surprisingly limited in their rationality, their willpower, and their self-interest. Indeed, people are more prone to bias, myopia, and charity than rational models – and most managers – assume, and this fact has profound implications for managerial and public policy making. In this course, you will gain a realistic understanding of human behavior, and you will learn to apply this understanding to many perspectives relevant for management. In a course that features guest lectures by a diverse group of SOM faculty engaged in cutting-edge behavioral research, you will learn how you can make better managerial and policy decisions – both by overcoming biases in your own decisions and by better understanding those whose behavior you are trying to change.

Managing Education Reform


An examination of current topics in public education reform from the perspective of a leader and manager. The course will emphasize strategies to close the achievement gap in American public schools, ranging from school level design to district and national policy. Students will explore different theories of action and challenges of execution in education reform, including in depth evaluation of school turnaround and new small schools, the expansion of charter schools, district accountability systems, management labor relations, and the education of students with disabilities. Garth Harries served for 5 years as a member of the leadership cabinet in the New York City Children First Reform under Joel Klein. Over the course of his tenure, his responsibilities included the creation of new small schools, the creation and management of charter schools, the redesign of special education and career and technical education, the early launch of the Autonomy Zone and the Partnership Support system, and a redesign of the DOE’s central organizational structure. Prior to joining the Department of Education, Garth was a consultant with McKinsey & Company. Garth is currently the Assistant Superintendent for Portfolio and Performance Management for the New Haven Public Schools.