Social Innovation: A Dozen Top Stories from 2018

In an annual tradition, we look back on Dallas Innovates’ most-read stories in each of our buckets of innovation: Startup, Invention, Education, Social, Creative, and Enterprise. Here’s a roundup of the “Top 12” in Social Innovation for 2018.


As we move into 2019, we’re reflecting on the social stories behind the people and places that grabbed our readers’ attention this year. From combating food deserts (UNT, Toyota, DART) to awarding nonprofits grants (Capital One) to transformative conservation projects (Texan By Nature), our most popular stories spanned the vast range of social innovation in Dallas-Fort Worth.

Here are the 12 most-read stories on for 2018.

1. Movers + Shakers: North Texas Social Innovators You Should Know

Dallas-Fort Worth is home to dozens of creatives who are changing the face of urban planning, social, and educational innovation.

The Altruists

[Photo: Mekitik Boy/iStock]

2. Business as Mutual: Leaders Give Insight on How Collaboration + Innovation Happens in DFW

This wide-ranging discussion covered how to foster collaboration, the role of technology, and many examples of DFW coming together to improve business, create social change, and simply make a positive impact on the region.

[Photo: Michael Samples]

3. How Large Corporations, Nonprofits Face Challenges of New Technologies

Representatives from American Airlines, Pizza Hut, Hypergiant, and the United Way to Metropolitan Dallas talk about how digital innovation affects their organizations.

cooperate innovation

Representatives from Pizza Hut, American Airlines, and United Way of Metropolitan Dallas talked about the challenges they face at a Dallas Startup Week seminar Friday morning at Ross Tower in downtown Dallas. [Photo: Michael Samples]

4. How Dallas Has to Become a Tech Hub From the Inside Out

Capital One’s 2018 Future Edge DFW survey shows that 85 percent of residents believe the area is a place for tech-related jobs and innovation. But, if the region is going to become the go-to place for technology, it has to be a collective effort from within, says Sanjiv Yajnik, head of the company’s financial services.

[Image: Dallas Technology Concept]

5. Collective Impact: Social Innovation in Dallas-Fort Worth

In this three-part series, a panel of experts explores Dallas-Fort Worth as a destination for global impact work.

Left to right, starting with top row: Benjamin Vann, Kate Knight, Michael Thomas, Sara Vassar, Steve Wanta, Salah Boukadoum, Michelle Williams, Matt Myers [Photos: Michael Samples]

6. UNT Dallas, Toyota, DART Launch Mobility Initiative to Combat Food Deserts in Southern Dallas

The farmer’s market on wheels will sell locally sourced produce to Southern Dallas residents.

UNT Dallas

[Photo: UNT Dallas]

7. Dallas Women’s Foundation Honors 6 Female Empowerment Leaders

The awards dinner in April commended these women for their positive influence on women and girls.

[DI Illustration: Courtesy Women’s Foundation]

8. Laura Bush’s Nonprofit Looking to Recognize ‘Transformative Conservation Projects’

Through its TxN Certification program, Texan By Nature highlights efforts that are “benefiting the state’s people, prosperity, and natural resources.”

Texan by nature Executive Director Joni-Carswell and founder Laura Bush

Texan by Nature Executive Director Joni-Carswell (left) with the nonprofit’s founder, Laura Bush. [Photo: Courtesy Texan By Nature]

9. A Walk in the Parks: Study Notes Dallas’ Efforts to Improve its Existing Greenspace

The Trust for Public Lands study released Wednesday shows that 60 percent of Dallas residents live within a 10-minute walk to a park.


Klyde Warren Park is an oasis in Dallas’ downtown area. [Photo: Michael Samples]

10. Capital One Marks 10 Years in Plano With Grants, STEM Education & a Look at the Future

The financial services company awarded grants to 10 nonprofits and hosted dynamic speakers to talk about empowering the next generation of engineers and scientists through education.

Arjun Dugal

Arjun Dugal, chief technology officer for financial services at Capital One, talks about the intersection of community and technology. [Photo: Courtesy Capital One]

11. Making the World a Better Place: The Power of One Conference

The March 10 conference highlighted people who made a social impact with their work.

12. If You Can’t Take the Heat, Plant More Trees: The Cool and Connected Oak Cliff Project

The urban “heat island” effect has major consequences on the quality of Dallas life. This project is planting trees to lessen the effect’s impact.

Volunteer scouts team up to carry water to trees that were planted in South Dallas. [Photo: Mark Graham/The Nature Conservancy]


Year In Review: Our Top 10 Most‑Read Stories of 2018

Startup: A Dozen Top Stories from 2018

Education: A Dozen Top Stories from 2018

Invention: A Dozen Top Stories from 2018

Creative: A Dozen Top Stories from 2018

Enterprise: A Dozen Top Stories from 2018

Startup stories with a social impact:

Dallas Architects Create ‘Life-Changing’ App For People With Vision Loss
The WayAround app uses information-laden tags that can attach to anything — files, clothes, food, and more.

Former Nike Director Launches Service-Based Shoe Brand in Fort Worth
Davi—billed as the “community impact sneaker”—hit the ground running by taking off on Kickstarter.

North Texas Fashion Startups Make Big Impact With Style
From fashion crafted by female artisans to the test launch of a new ZIP code-based shopping app, fashion enthusiasts in DFW are creating brands that make a difference and are changing the industry. For these Dallas-Fort Worth brands, fashion is more than just a material world. It’s a way to make a difference.

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