Corporate Changemakers Challenge: Welcoming solutions advancing social change across all SDGs


Deadline: 13-Nov-22

The Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship and Salesforce have just launched a new UpLink Innovation Challenge to promote corporate social intrapreneurship.

The goal of the challenge is to foster a new generation of corporate intrapreneurs who demonstrate that companies can help advance social and environmental equity, while increasing business value.

This challenge is looking for changemakers and their solutions from the private sector working with business models, products, services, workforce, procurement, etc. that drive inclusive growth while creating value at the heart of their businesses, communities and natural ecosystems. If we can put the powerful blend of enterprise and inclusion into action, we could be heading towards a more sustainable and equitable world by taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the digital and green transitions. Let’s harvest the creative potential of corporate social intrapreneurs!

Areas of intervention
  • Inclusive and sustainable value chains: Solutions that help companies build inclusive and sustainable supply chains, use resources more efficiently and become more competitive while ensuring social and environmental sustainability. Examples: responsible sourcing; the integration of small producers in the value chain; tools developed to enable it for other organizations.
  • Access included: Solutions that promote inclusive and sustainable models, products and services to ensure respect for the dignity and rights of everyone. Examples: diversity solutions; equal opportunity programs; infrastructure access solutions; products and services for traditionally excluded populations.
  • Inclusive finance and revenue generation: Solutions that successfully support income generation and social mobility for low-income populations. Examples: economic growth programs; solutions to close income gaps in disadvantaged populations; employability frameworks; financial inclusion tools.
  • In case your solution works to advance social equality from a different perspective not listed in the three previously defined focus areas, please select this fourth option. We welcome and would love to consider solutions that advance social change across all SDGs.

What are the benefits of applying?

  • The best submissions will be invited to the UpLink Innovation Network, facilitated by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, Salesforce and supporting partners. This 6 month program will include:
    • Visibility: public exhibition via the World Economic Forum and the digital media of the Schwab Foundation.
    • To access: Opportunity to participate in selected World Economic Forum and Salesforce events, projects and communities.
    • Connections: presentation of selected organizations within the ecosystem of the World Economic Forum and the Schwab Foundation.
    • Mentorship opportunities: guidance on your impact journey with experienced support from other corporate social intrapreneurs and support partners.

What kind of innovations are we looking for?

  • Stage: Impact-oriented initiatives that are in the growth or scale-up phase with some demonstrated impact in social and business terms. Solutions in the “idea” or “pilot” phases will not be considered.
  • Business value: the challenge is looking for initiatives that, in addition to creating social impact, also generate business value by leveraging company assets and in perfect alignment with its core business*
  • Scale: Solutions must have the potential for scale, particularly for the most affected communities, alongside a vision to achieve long-term financial viability and sustainability.
  • CSR initiatives will not be taken into account. While we encourage businesses to be aware of the impact they have on all aspects of society, including economic, social and environmental; this challenge aims to promote corporate social intrapreneurship initiatives that are at the heart of the company.
Eligibility criteria
  • Submissions will be evaluated based on the following criteria:
    • Disruptive innovation: solutions with a fresh and clear angle of innovation.
    • Impact mission: with clearly stated impact objectives to advance the SDGs and aiming to monitor and evaluate the impact achieved.
    • Sustainable: which supports programs that are sustainable over the long term, aiming to provide impact that outlasts the challenge.
    • Business Value: Solutions embedded in a core part of the business that can deliver benefits in addition to social impact, either by generating financial returns or broader business value in other aspects.
    • Partnerships: Solutions that encompass collaborative approaches with stakeholders and demonstrate “win-win” benefits for multiple agendas, especially society, environment, nonprofits, and education.
    • Governance and operating model: Solutions delivered with the support of an internal business sponsor (middle or senior leader) and with a team with the capacity and skills to achieve the solution’s objectives.

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