Francisco Noguera

Turning a Great Experience into a Remarkable Experience

ssir fall 2I have always looked forward to receiving my quarterly copy of the Stanford Social Innovation Review in the mail. Without exception, I find what I am looking for: engaging and thought provoking articles, a rich discussion on trends and ideas in this space, great book reviews like the recent one of Out of Poverty by Paul Hudnut … the list could go on and on.

I had no complaints. Like I said, I constantly look forward to it! I was getting good and relevant content on the topic I am most passionate about. I was grateful for that and it kept me motivated to renew my subscription on time.

But who doesn’t like surprises? This fall, my “SSIR experience” took a drastic shift -a very positive one indeed, as I opened my mailbox and found a beautiful, clean and very crisp looking fall issue of the journal. This new look is the result of an effort that began about a year ago and aimed at making a great journal even greater. A tough and risky endeavour, no doubt. After all, there are many out there that keep suggesting, if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it, right? Well, here is my personal take: SSIR was already a great journal and it figured out how to become much better even. The result of this effort is frankly exceptional.The journal is now more inviting and much easier to navigate. I was able to find what I was looking for very quickly and enjoyed browsing each and everyone of its new and very clean-looking pages. But the new SSIR is not just about better looks; it also brings along new sections like the interesting What’s Next, a collection of short pieces giving us heads up of interesting innovations in the pipeline.

Another great new section is called What Didn’t Work. You got the idea; it will focus on analyzing failed social innovations and the factors that led to failure. Great and necessary analysis!

As far as good content is concerned, this fall’s issue is no exception. It even features an article on?mobile phones and development by’s staff writer David Lehr.

Get yourself a print copy of the current issue and you’ll see what this whole buzz is about. Even more so, subscribe to the journal. You will not regret it. It is one of the great resources available to learn about, become involved and increasingly interested in the social enterprise arena.

It is also a great resource to follow the practical recommendations of Kiva’s Jessica Flannery in a recent blog post?that I thoroughly enjoyed about how she became a social entrepreneur (again, featured in SSIR’s blog).

Kudos to the editorial team?at Stanford’s Social Innovation Review. This redesign is a job well done;?it is inspiring and encouraging for us at, as we continue to?go into?”design thinking” mode and embark ourselves in our own website’s redesign project this fall.

SSIR confirms how careful and thoughtful design can turn a great experience into a remarkable one. If you, our readers, feel anywhere close to how I felt after?discovering the new version of this journal, I will consider ours a successful effort.