Jeff Skoll created the Skoll Foundation in 1999 to pursue his vision of a sustainable world of peace and prosperity. Led by CEO Sally Osberg since 2001, our mission is to drive large-scale change by investing in, connecting, and celebrating social entrepreneurs and the innovators who help them solve the world’s most pressing problems. Social entrepreneurs are society’s change agents, creators of innovations that disrupt the status quo and transform our world for the better. By identifying the people and programs already bringing positive change around the world, we empower them to extend their reach, deepen their impact, and fundamentally improve society.
We are now one of the leading foundations in the field of social entrepreneurship. Since 1999, the Skoll Foundation has invested approximately $499 million worldwide, including the Skoll Award to 111 social entrepreneurs and 91 organizations on five continents. In addition to these investments, we fund a $25 million portfolio of program-related investments (PRIs). In 2003, we partnered with the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford to launch the first academic center dedicated to social entrepreneurship, the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship. We also support and partner with many pioneers and innovators in the field, organizations such as Ashoka, Acumen Fund and Duke University’s Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship. As the field has matured and we enter our second decade, we are focusing our strategy. We are developing a deeper understanding of the issue areas where our social entrepreneurs operate so we can apply more resources at critical moments to maximize our collective impact. Learn more about our approach.
Beyond investments and partnerships, we also operate programs that foster collaboration such as the Skoll World Forum which is the premier conference on social entrepreneurship and now a year-round online platform where executive audiences can learn about the latest news and innovative approaches in a variety of issue areas (e.g. environmental sustainability or education), and engage with the world’s leading thinkers and doers of social change on key questions, challenges and opportunities.
We also share the stories of social entrepreneurs through partnerships with leading film and broadcast organizations such as the PBS NewsHour and the Sundance Institute, which help drive public awareness of social entrepreneurship and its potential to address the critical issues of our time.