Social Value Creation Manifesto

Whether inside large organizations, venture startups, government organizations, or NGOs, being aware of what one needs to know, what one needs to do, and who one needs to be to drive both economic value and social value is crucial to addressing and advancing the new role of business in society.

Social value creation is about co-creation

Companies do not create social value in a vacuum. Unlocking social value is a process of co-creation between society, stakeholders, and company leadership. Companies can create social value by considering the economic, environmental, and social aspects of their impact as well as how to increase well-being and development.

Social value creation is about design

Social innovators need design to implement their vision—whether it is a new product, a new business, or a shift in their sourcing policies and practices.

Social value creation is about accessibility

Social innovators find ways of bringing the disenfranchised into the business model.

Social value creation is about leveraging business to address social issues

From obesity to corruption to road safety, companies are using social problems as a starting point for new products and new businesses.

Social value creation is about transformation

Whether companies are involved in nation-building or changing the sector or the community they operate in, social value creation is about deep, long-term change, not just cosmetic changes.

Social value creation is about developing infrastructure

In order to enter new markets, companies may need to develop the necessary infrastructure.

Social value creation requires training

Whether it is to raise awareness with a sector or to prepare employees, social value creation requires extensive training to allow for change.

Social value creation is about reimagining the purpose of business

To create social value, a company may need to reimagine its purpose and structure. It may be necessary to reimagine the business model to create lasting social value.

Social value creation is about imagining new models for investing capital

Managing societal dilemmas is complex. It takes time, requires a new understanding, depends on new forms of collaborative relationships, requires innovative financing schemes, and calls forth the moral and financial courage to put capital where the highest ROI is recalibrated and recalculated to accelerate economic and social progress.


Adapted from Creating Social Value: A Guide for Leaders and Changemakers by Cheryl Kiser and Deborah Leipziger with J. Janelle Shubert