This is an action research fellowship
This program integrates leadership development with action research into practical solutions in the developing world for poverty and environmental problems. It trains student leaders to conduct research in the developing world into how social entrepreneurs address the fundamental human needs of poor communities. Applicants should be prepared for a sustained effort in research and personal reflection across all nine months of the fellowship.
View Course Syllabus for ELSJ 134 (required spring quarter class, from spring 2013) and for ELSJ 135 (required fall quarter class, from fall 2013)
Action research projects for 2014
The Center anticipates awarding about 16 fellowships for students to work with about 6 GSBI social enterprises. Applicants should read these project proposals carefully, since they will be asked to rank them according to their interest in their application. Candidates will be selected for specific action research projects. The precise placements will not be confirmed until we award the fellowships.
SalaUno: Conducting market research and patient surveys at a health enterprise in Mexico City providing affordable eye care; this placement requires Spanish fluency.
Ilumexico: Enhancing marketing strategies for selling solar lighting technologies in Indigenous communities of rural Mexico; this placement requires Spanish fluency.
Nazava Water Filters: Research to enhance the marketing and distribution of drinking water filters across the Indonesian archipelago.
Prior action research projects
Teams of fellows have undertaken the following action research activities:
- Social Impact Monitoring and Evaluation
- Social Documentation and Videography
- Market Assessment
- Mobile Applications and SMS Development
- Technology Evaluation
Learn more > Student profiles and examples of prior action research
Sample action research projects - for the 2013 cohort - can be found below and by clicking on the enterprise icons.
- Solar Ear Foundation
- Equal Access
- Lifeline Energy
- Solar Sister
- Angaza Design
January: Application deadline
February: Finalists interviewed
March: Fellowships announced
Spring Quarter - ELSJ 134 "Social Entrepreneurship Seminar" We use the following text book: John Elkington and Pamela Hartigan. The Power of Unreasonable People: How Social Entrepreneurs Create Markets that Change the World
June – August Six week field placement with social enterprise
Participation at the Global Social Benefit Incubator (several days in August)
Fall Quarter - ELSJ 135 "Research in Social Entrepreneurship" We use the following textbook: Christopher Lowney. Heroic Leadership: Best Practices from a 450-Year-Old Company That Changed the World
The GSBF Field Placement Experience
All Fellowship placement sites are chosen from the GSBI Alumni network which spans over 160 organizations worldwide. GSBI Alumni apply to be host sites for the program and are vetted by Center staff on the following criteria:
- Safety of the geographic region of the site
- Feasibility and quality of the research proposed by the enterprise
- Ability of fellows to gather research data at placement
- Opportunities for the fellows to learn from the communities served by the enterprise
Participation as a fellowship placement site is not a requirement for GSBI Alumni, and 25% of each class will work at an enterprise domestically.
Matching Applicants with Field Sites
Beginning in November 2012, we will post detailed information about the social enterprises hosting fellows and the action research projects they wish fellows to complete. This will include specific information on countries, enterprises, action research projects and skill requirements. In 2013, fellows will serve in India, Uganda, and other countries.
Flights and Travel Logistics
All travel bookings for fellows are made directly by Center staff. This ensures that your costs are covered and that fellows will be able to travel together for what can by up to a day depending on the placement location. The Center will also be responsible for arranging your lodging accommodations during your placement. Any additional travel and sight-seeing are the responsibility of the fellows.
Safety and Communication
Santa Clara University holds paramount the health and safety of our students. This fellowship program follows all university international safety policies, which is closely tied to the US Department of State travel information. Each GSBF placement is thoroughly evaluated for safety from known environmental, disease, or political concerns. While fellows are abroad we require weekly communication via text or email. We also track regional news online so we are equipped with the latest developments in the placement region and can act quickly in case of an emergency. No international travel is without risk. Every applicant should have a conversation about international field work with their family and loved ones prior to submitting an application.