In February 2023, the HBS New Venture Competition received 57 entries to the Social Enterprise Track, from student teams across Harvard University. After an extensive review and deliberation process with social enterprise leaders from across Harvard, the Social Enterprise Initiative just announced the 16 semifinalists in the Social Enterprise Track. These 16 teams will present virtually to a panel of expert judges—including philanthropists, impact investors, capacity building organizations, and social entrepreneurs—in March to determine the finalists. Below you’ll find an overview of the competition and our 2023 semifinalists.
NEW VENTURE COMPETITION OVERVIEW
Hosted each year by the School’s Arthur Rock Center for Entrepreneurship and the Social Enterprise Initiative, in partnership with HBS Alumni Clubs & Associations, the Harvard Business School New Venture Competition is open to all students and alumni interested in launching new business and social impact ventures.
The Social Enterprise Track of the Competition provides an opportunity for students to explore social entrepreneurship and test ideas for social innovation in a rigorous and supportive environment. Graduate students across Harvard University enter with new ventures that drive social change using nonprofit, for-profit, or hybrid models. Through February and March student teams progress through several stages of judging, conveying their idea through executive summaries and presentations, and receiving valuable feedback from judges at every stage. The Social Enterprise Track brings together expert judges from the field to evaluate entries based on the idea, its potential for social value creation, and the likelihood of achieving success.
2023 SEMIFINALISTS: SOCIAL ENTERPRISE TRACK
Bridge: The Health Equity Innovation Lab
Incubation, investment, scale, and acceleration of integrated patient and community-centered SDOH solutions to eradicate health disparities for marginalized populations.
Jenny Henderson, MBA 2024
Jinal Shah, MBA/MPP 2024
David Velasquez, MBA/MD 2023
The collaboration platform for public service.
Austin Boral, MBA/MPP 2023
Madeleine Smith, MBA/MPP 2023
Bridging digital divide by providing equipment and teaching basic digital literacy skills.
Gulnaz Kordanova, HGSE
Enabling independence in pediatric patients with chronic conditions.
Katie James, HSPH
Akila Namasivayam, HSPH
Leveraging waste wood and a proprietary chemical technology process to build affordable and highly effective drinking water filters for household/individual use.
Rishon Benjamin, MBA 2022
Dhananjay Goel, HKS
Unlocking career success for immigrants in America through courses, coaching, and community.
Jashin Lin, MBA 2023
Enabling decarbonization across rice fields. Our solution uses remote sensing to support the transition to regenerative agriculture by giving farmers access to the voluntary carbon market.
Devdut Dalal, MBA 2023
Xavier Laguarta, MBA 2023
Democratizing access to the carbon market for businesses in the Global South.
Grace Lam, MBA/MPP 2024
Democratizing credit for 150M underbanked Indonesians by providing alternative loans and helping them to build a credit history.
Claire Wu, MBA 2023
A tech-enabled platform to connect returning citizens with community health services.
Pooja Chandrashekar, MBA/MD 2024
Leah Yared, JD/MBA 2025
A venture that is boldly attempting to produce drinking water from hydrogen fuel cells.
Jake Sortor, JD/MBA 2025
Accelerating fashion decarbonization by leveraging scale to reduce cost for sustainable materials.
Katie Waugh, MBA/MPP 2024
Offering affordable & reliable Water-as-a-Service to small scale farmers in India using solar.
Rea Savla, MBA 2024
A launchpad for African talent to earn, learn, and build the future. We connect brilliant young graduates to full-time, career-track remote work opportunities.
Ava Zhang, MBA/MPP 2023
The MV3 Foundation
Empowering Black college students pursuing careers in health sciences.
Ashley Kyalwazi, MD/MPP 2024
Leonard Nettey, MD/PhD
Together Achieving Dreams Foundation Inc.
Increasing employment for the blind and low vision community across corporate America by bridging the gap between potential and possibility.
Kathryn Webster, MBA 2023