Non-du·pli·ca·tion  /nänˈdo͞opləˈkāshən/ – Noun: Intentionally avoiding redundant effort. 

Nonduplication is the third pillar of the Seven Pillar Methodology for Social Entrepreneurship. In a nutshell, the pillars are: vision, special skills, nonduplication, partnership, credit sharing, feedback and staying power.

With non-duplication, the focus is on not adding redundant effort, but rather addressing a chasm where you are truly needed. However, non-duplication doesn’t mean you have to reinvent the wheel. It’s smart to look to the best practices of others. Let’s say, if you were a wonderful baker of cookies, would you be smart to open your shop across the street from another very excellent baker of cookies? Perhaps you would be wise to look in another part of town. By non-duplication, we mean going to a neighborhood that needs you! The question we ask is, “what need isn’t being met effectively, and where do I see myself jumping in?”

Teachable Examples
Here are three teachable examples. Educators may choose one or more of these,  select their own examples, or an alternative example from our spreadsheet [PDF]:

  1. Lois Lee founder of Children of the Night rescues kids otherwise abandoned to the mean streets of prostitution, with a 24 hour hotline and a free taxi/airline for those who wish to escape.   When she stepped in, there was nobody else in LA helping these kids. The women prostitutes asked her to help. She started hosting these kids in her own house. The whole area is fraught with stigma, so she was very brave to do so.
  2. Over fifty years ago – half a century – Peter Young stepped in to try to free people from the endless cycle of addiction and incarceration in New York, founding He was meeting a need, despite the stigma associated with this group. By implementing a three-pronged approach with treatment, housing and job training, he still helps many people become tax paying citizens with the dignity of a paycheck.
  3. Gary Oppenheimer noticed a disconnect – home gardeners were sometimes producing excess crops, while others were going hungry, and at the same time food pantries were primarily relying on dried and canned goods. He founded – a website – to connect home gardeners with the food pantries, helping those with an overabundance of fresh food share with those in great need.

About these Pages
Students, educators, nonprofit leaders… no matter where you are in your journey, The Elfenworks Foundation wants to help you to be successful with making a lasting, positive change.  Educators, we hope this subpage helps you as you equip your students with this effective “life tool.” It’s useful in many realms beyond social entrepreneurship. See the book, entitled Intelligence & Compassion in Action; The Seven Pillars for Social Entrepreneurs for additional factors that influence staying power, and for teachable questions. Also, for more on  “The Seven Pillars of Social Entrepreneurship”  (this page is a subpage) then please visit the main subject page.