THE ELEVATING IMPACT PITCH FEST
Finalists pitch a
problem instead of a solution

We know that the best solutions are informed by a deep understanding of the issues, so this year the Elevating Impact Pitch Fest finalists have deeply explored a social or environmental problem, and presented their findings to show a bigger picture. 

 

 The winning team from the PSU Elevating Impact Pitch Fest competes against hundreds teams from across the globe at Map the System, as they all seek to understand complex social issues at a systems-level. Map the System is hosted by the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at Oxford’s Saïd Business School. 

MEET THE ELEVATING IMPACT FINALISTS

Henry Burreson’s systems map will reveal a mental health crisis, and how the issue is mistreated based on a lack of understanding, treatment, and subsequent stigma.

 

Carrie Sturrock illustrates how businesses can strengthen the U.S. refugee resettlement ecosystem, which is crumbling due to drastic cuts in refugee admissions at a time when there are 70 million displaced people worldwide, the largest number since World War II.    

 

Each year over 30,000 incarcerated people are released from prisons and jails in Oregon. Valerie Armstrong has been mapping a system of service providers in and around those facilities to help us understand where support and innovation is needed to help an often discarded population.

 

 

 

Advisors

Dominic Varacalli, Founding Partner, Kickstand

Lola Milholland, Co-Founder & CEO Umi Organic

Erin Kenzie, Instructor of Systems Science, Portland State University

Aspiring social entrepreneurs are accustomed to pitching their new enterprise ideas, but we have noticed that those individual solutions won’t take root without an understanding of the landscape around a social or environmental problem.

In other words, tackling a challenge starts with understanding a problem and its wider context, rather than jumping straight into business plan to fix it.

 

This competition asks finalists to select a social or environmental issue, and to explore, probe, and research all the connecting elements, existing organizations, and solutions that surround it.

 

They will present this issue back to us in a way that an audience can understand, share, and learn from. The approach was developed by Daniela Papi-Thornton as a part of her research on “Tackling HeroPreneurship”

Why explore an issue over pitching a solution? 

On to the Finals

Valerie Armstrong and her team, including Erin Kenzie and Gloria Meztli are mapping a system of service providers supporting previously incarcerated women in Oregon.

 

They are now preparing to compete against hudreds of teams from across the globe as they all seek to understand complex social issues at a systems-level.

 

Map the System is a global competition hosted by the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at Oxford’s Saïd Business School.