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Social Impact

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NVC-7 Social Impact Prize

Do you have a business idea that harnesses commercial models to create social or environmental change?

The mission of the Social Impact Prize is to demonstrate that social and environmental responsibility are fundamental pillars of success for any business, regardless of the industry.

Last year, we awarded a $3000 prize for the most socially innovative company in the NVC, regardless of the track that they compete in. This year, we are poised to award a similar amount. The prize is organized every year by leaders of the student group Net Impact, based out of the CU Leeds School of Business.


Why Compete?

Besides the possibility to win an additional prize money, you will have a chance to get a different variety of feedback on your business. Our judges are leaders in the field of sustainable business and will be able to help you think about important factors of how to make your business successful in the long term.

Questions? Contact us!

Hilary Nalven – SI Prize leader (

Julie Waggoner – SI Prize leader (

Nancy Schoemann – SI Prize leader (

NVC Social Impact Judging Criteria for 2013-14 

* Note on the Social Impact Criteria (subject to change for NVC 7)

This year, the NVC has a prize for the most socially innovative idea, regardless of which track it comes from. Teams have indicated whether or not they will compete for this prize and this will be clearly indicated on the top of their executive summary. Only those teams who are competing for the social impact prize should be judged on the Social Impact Criteria. The Social Impact score will be calculated separately from the other criteria. However, a higher a score on the traditional criteria may indicate a more viable business, thereby raising the Social Impact score.


Possible Points

Social Impact 

Points Rewarded

Triple Bottom Line:




  • The triple bottom line: People
    • Mission has an explicit commitment to Social Impact
    • The business pays every employee/contractor at least a living wage (above minimum wage)
    • The business adds value to society by addressing a community issue
    • The business incorporates worker equity into its model
    • The business will evaluate the social impact of their supply chain
    • The business focuses majority of spending with local suppliers
    • The business looks to create jobs locally

Triple Bottom Line:





  • The triple bottom line: Planet
    • Mission has an explicit commitment to Environmental Stewardship
    • The business does something to address environmental or climate issues
    • The business attempts to operate with a minimal environmental “footprint”, reducing waste throughout their business
    • The business will invest in renewable energy to power their operations
    • The business will evaluate the environmental impact of their supply chain

Triple Bottom Line:






  • The triple bottom line: Profit
  • The plan is innovative, realistic, and consistent across the following categories:
    • Product/service description
    • Marketing
    • Financials
    • Description of competitive advantage
    • Growth plan
    • The idea is a viable business plan and thereby exhibits real potential to make an impact

Measurability and Quality of Incorporation



  • Measurability & Quality of Incorporation
    • Triple bottom line goals/objectives are measureable and business has a plan to track them.
    • Triple bottom line goals/objectives are woven into the company vision and core operations. Not merely “add-ons”
    • Triple bottom line goals/objectives are clearly communicated in executive summary, as well as during the live presentation

Creativity & Vision


  • Creativity
    • The business exhibits creativity in solving a social and/or environmental issue
    • Vision
      • This is an idea that is addressing a significant issue on the horizon, even if the problem isn’t as evident today
      • This tackles an issue that you haven’t seen previously addressed

Total Social Impact Points






For more information, email Andy Evans