IDEO has been working in the social sector for more than ten years. Recently, it became clear that launching a nonprofit organization focused solely on social innovation would allow IDEO to make an even bigger impact on global poverty. Enter, IDEO.org!
Through Human-Centered Design projects, we’re bringing stability, hope, and dignity to communities around the world that are wrestling with poverty. Along the way, we’re sharing what we learn and accomplish with everyone—so we’re all learning together. And through the IDEO.org Fellowship Program, we’re fostering a community of future leaders with expertise in design thinking, then letting them loose on the world.
To establish IDEO.org, IDEO provided substantial seed funding. Now, as a separate 501(c)(3) nonprofit, IDEO.org relies on fees for service and philanthropic donations to cover our costs. We ask the nonprofit partners we work with to pay the direct costs of our work with them. And we raise money through fundraising to cover our indirect costs, which include our Fellowship Program and our storytelling and knowledge-sharing efforts. By raising philanthropic capital, we are able to select the projects we undertake based on their potential for impact, rather than an organization’s ability to pay.