2019 Symposium

Building on the success of the inaugural 2018 cohort, the 2019 Southern California Symposium returned for a second year. The 18 participants learned about the process of social innovation, as well as a variety of social innovation models, such as new organizational forms and new models of financing social change. The program featured 20 speakers over four weeks, including USC faculty as well as social innovation practitioners. Guest speakers led seminars and discussions on a variety of topics relevant to Southern California, including immigration, healthcare, housing, and transportation.

READ: “What to Expect”


Each weekend featured learning encounters in several formats, presenting different kinds of material. Dinner speakers, seminars, panel discussions, skill-building exercises and small group collaborations facilitated by faculty mentors were all part of the mix. In addition, participants worked in teams on a capstone project that evaluates one of several long-term challenges facing Southern California and offers affirmative, actionable solutions.

Highlights: 2019 Southern California Symposium: Weekend 1
Highlights: 2019 Southern California Symposium: Weekend 3
Highlights: 2019 Southern California Symposium: Weekend 4
Highlights: 2019 Southern California Symposium: Final Presentations

Session Schedule

See what programs and speakers were planned for each weekend session.

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Faculty and Leadership

The So Cal Symposium faculty are nationally recognized leaders or advocates in their respective fields.

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The 2019 Symposium cohort was composed of 18 visionary leaders from a range of industries from public, private, and nonprofit organizations.

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Student Work

The Symposium’s 2019 cohort applied social innovation concepts to crucial challenges facing the region in order to come up with sustainable and novel solutions. As one team, the cohort developed and presented a final project that showcased their learnings from the symposium.

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