Social Impact

Learn Through the Lens of Social Impact

Whether you’re new to or steeped in business practices designed for social impact, at Berkeley Haas you will be surrounded by students and faculty at the forefront of inclusive, sustainable, responsible business practices across a spectrum of fields and functions.

You’ll be among students seeking to add social impact as a lens for their future work. Others pursue careers in nonprofit and public leadership, corporate social responsibility, or social entrepreneurship. All of them find the coursework and experiential learning opportunities they need to prepare. Courses include Strategy & Leadership for Social Impact, Socially Responsible Investing, Social Impact Metrics, Business & Sustainable Supply Chains, and the experiential Social Sector Solutions.

You also build relationships for good by participating in the Global Social Venture Competition, Berkeley Board Fellows, and the Net Impact Club.

Sample Social Impact Coursework

  • The Business Case for Investing in Women
  • Human Rights and Business
  • Nonprofit Boards: Governance and Leadership in Nonprofit Organizations
  • Social Impact Metrics
  • Social Investing
  • Strategic Financial Management of Nonprofit Organizations

Social Impact Experiential Learning

As your schedule on the job, at home, and in class permit you have several experiential learning opportunities to select among.

Social Sector Solutions

 Social Sector Solutions partners student teams with McKinsey & Company coaches to provide strategic consulting services to a nonprofit, social enterprise, or public organization.

Social Lean Launchpad

Social Lean Launchpad applies the Lean Launchpad and Social Blueprint Business Design methodologies to frame the essential strategies, insights, and practices that distinguish social ventures. It strives to create the conditions for students to become Social Venture designers, founders, and leaders.

Other applied innovation courses, such as International Business Development often have a social impact component. See the full list of Berkeley MBA experiential learning opportunities. 

Social Impact Faculty

Ben Mangan, executive director of the Center for Social Sector Leadership, also serves on the Federal Reserve Board Community Advisory Council. Named a Social Capitalist of the year by Fast Company, he teaches Social Impact Strategy and Leadership and Social Lean Launchpad.

Professor Kellie McElhaney is the founding director of the Center for Equity, Gender, and Leadership. Her courses include the Business Case for Investing in Women. Her recent research focuses on the business value of investing in equity and women as corporate leaders.

Nora Silver is the founder and faculty director of the Center for Social Sector Leadership. She teaches Large-Scale Social Change and the experiential class, Social Sector Solutions. Her research interests span multi-sector leadership, next-generation social sector leadership, and networks for social impact.

Omar Romero-Hernandez teaches Business & Sustainable Supply Chains and Sustainable Use of Ecosystems. His research focuses on the development of a green supply chain, the implications of biofuels, and the larger energy sector.

Related Centers and Initiatives

The Center for Responsible Business connects students, businesses, and faculty to achieve the potential of business to create a more equitable, inclusive, and sustainable society. The Center’s experiential learning offerings include the Strategic and Sustainable Business Solutions course and the Haas Socially Responsible Investment Fund.

The Center for Equity, Gender, and Leadership focuses on developing leaders who are fluent in equity issues and on creating a more equitable and diverse business world.

The Center for Social Sector Leadership provides experiential fieldwork projects that connect students with top nonprofit and public sector leaders and organizations. Its hands-on learning programs include Social Sector Solutions for Nonprofits, a partnership with McKinsey & Company that mentors consultant teams of students on projects with nonprofit organizations.

The mission of the Institute for Business & Social Impact is to inspire and empower development of innovative solutions to pressing social and environmental challenges. Founded and led by Professor Laura Tyson, the IBSI houses the Centers for Equity, Gender Equity, and Leadership, Responsible Business, and Social Sector Leadership.

Social Impact Co-Curriculars

The Net Impact Club inspires, educates, and prepares Berkeley Haas students to leverage the power of business to create a more socially and environmentally sustainable world.

The Berkeley Board Fellows enables vital governance and leadership training by placing graduate students as non-voting members on nonprofit boards of directors in the Bay Area.

The International Development & Enterprise Club connects the Berkeley community with leading researchers, specialists, and practitioners to further students’ understanding of current practices and explore career opportunities.

The Dow Sustainability Innovation Challenge engages students from 18 universities worldwide in cases that promote forward thinking in social and environmental responsibility.

The Global Social Venture Competition offers more than $80,000 in prize money to help social entrepreneurs transform ideas into ventures that address major global challenges. Participating in GSCV also provides mentoring, exposure, and networking opportunities.

As part of a national network bringing together socially minded MBA students from top business schools, the Haas Impact Investing Network (HIIN) provides students with first-hand experience in impact investing.

Support for Social Impact Careers

Recruiters for organizations dedicated to or interested in social impact appreciate Berkeley Haas as a great place to find talent. Students have recently been hired in social impact roles with Nike, Bridgespan Group, FSG, Levi Strauss, and others. 

In addition to the skilled, expert services offered by the Career Management Group, the UC Berkeley Nonprofit & Public Management listserv and the Haas Social Impact LinkedIn Group also connect students with career opportunities.

Ijeh Ogbechi

Ijeh Ogbechi

MBA 18

Investment Associate
Wetherby Asset Management

“I want to focus my career toward a position where I can have a greater positive social impact on my community. Berkeley-Haas is hands-down the best school in that sector. It not only offers great classes on the topic, but I've formed networks with companies and individuals who are committed to social impact.”