Wharton BPC

Social Impact Prize

Congratulations to CURE ACCELERATOR (Team Leader: David Fajgenbaum M'13/WG'15) - winner of the 2014-15 WBPC Social Impact Prize!

Cure Accelerator (CA) is a centralized data repository and collaboration platform that collects clinically-actionable information on rare diseases to accelerate drug development and help patients to get the right drug based on thousands of aggregated cases.


The 2014-2015 BPC Social Impact Prize Judges

  • Bob Hornsby WG’00, Managing Partner & Founder, JOBOMAX Global LTD
  • Ami Dalal C’99/W’99/WG’05, Social Financial Services, Ashoka
  • Lisa Rickert WG'96, Director of CGI International, Clinton Global Initiative
  • Goldie Shturman WG’09, Investment Officer, Inter-American Investment Corporation
  • Amy Wang G'12/WG'12, AVP, Global Social Finance, Deutche Bank


The Social Impact Prize is awarded to a Semifinalist team who has the strongest business plan that clearly conveys how the venture will make a positive social impact. Social Impact can be demonstrated in a number of ways and we encourage students to think broadly about this.  Some examples of social impact can include:
  • Building a business that directly addresses a social problem
  • Sourcing products in a socially responsible fashion
  • Building a business that secondarily addresses a social problem (ex. Buy One, Give One model)
  • Ensuring fair and ethically labor practices that are core to the business’ mission
This is not meant to be a comprehensive list, but rather provide a foundation for further investigation and thought.

The team must reach the Semifinals and submit a pitch deck, and pitch to both the Semifinalist judges for consideration as a Finalist and the Social Impact judges’ panel.

Please note: The Social Impact Prize is an additional prize of the WBPC and winning this prize does not preclude a team from also winning one of the top 3 prizes.

How to Apply

To be considered for the Social Impact Prize, a team must meet all the following criteria:

    • Reach the Semifinals and submit a pitch deck, and pitch to the Semifinalist judges for consideration as a Finalist;
    • Pitch to a panel of external judges (social impact/entrepreneurship experts) who will then choose a winner
      • Judges will be asked to consider the team's incorporation of social impact, as well as the criteria for Semifinalist judges.
      • Note that plans/models for social impact must be clearly addressed in a team’s presentation.
      • The WBPC Committee reserves the right to make the final decision about the eligibility of any team's submission that has opted to be considered for the SI prize.


    • BPC workshops or Wharton Entrepreneurship Wednesday workshops that are focused on the social impact space. Please see the WBPC Schedule of Events for more information. To view a recording of Professor's Wes Hutchinson's 2011 WBPC workshop, "Measuring Social Impact for Social Enterprise", please click here.
    • B-Corps assessment tool (particularly the Impact Business Models section) which is used by businesses ‘to assess, compare, and improve their social and environmental impact’.
    With more than 26 years’ combined experience developing and studying social enterprises in the field across Africa and in the United States, Wharton professor Ian MacMillan and Dr. James Thompson, director of the Wharton Social Enterprise Program, have found that social entrepreneurs do not face greater risk than traditional entrepreneurs in launching a social enterprise; they face greater uncertainty.
    In The Social Entrepreneur’s Playbook, MacMillan and Thompson provide a tough-love approach that guides aspiring social entrepreneurs to systematically decrease uncertainty and significantly increase the likelihood of a successful social enterprise launch. They offer critical frameworks and tools to help them take the next step when they are ready.