Our President

anec (26)Eric Leenson is founder and president of SOL Economics. He served as coordinator for 10 years of the international project, “Socially Responsible Enterprise and Local Development in Cuba”. By doing so Eric has become an expert on the subject of social and solidarity economy.  His work in this capacity has allowed him to partner with leaders of the social and solidarity economy movements of Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, Ecuador,  Mexico and Spain.

Prior to his participation in this project, he was President of Progressive Asset Management, Inc., a pioneering socially responsible investment firm he co-founded in 1987. He has served as a strategic advisor to Forum Empresa, a hemispheric organization of socially responsible businesses based in Panama City, Panama. Leenson is also a member of the international board of Instituto Ethos, a renowned business responsibility organization in Brazil.

His experience in social enterprise dates back to the 1970’s and his co-founding of La Peña Cultural Center, a community center in the San Francisco Bay area that continues to flourish to this day on the premise that cultural activism can help achieve social justice.

Eric received his BA from the Woodrow Wilson School of International and Public Affairs at Princeton University, and his MBA from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley. He has lived in Argentina, Chile, and Peru and traveled frequently to other countries of the region.

Leenson is co-author of a Viewpoint Piece to be featured in the Winter 2014 edition of the Stanford Social Innovation Review entitled “A New Frontier for Socially Responsible Enterprise: Cuba”.

For more information, contact Eric Leenson at eleenson@soleconomics.com

Our Associates

rbetancourtRafael Betancourt is Consultant to SOL Economics. For the past four years he has been local coordinator of the international project, “Socially Responsible Enterprise and Local Development in Cuba”, connecting international social and solidarity economy leaders with their Cuban counterparts and crafting a network for promoting SSE and social responsibility in Cuba with wide participation of activists from many sectors.

He combines this with his work as English Editor of Revista Temas, Cuba’s premier social science and humanities journal, and as professor of Urban Economics at the Colegio Universitario San Geronimo de La Habana of the University of Havana. He is a frequent lecturer and speaker on Cuban economics both in Cuba and abroad and has published extensively.

Prior to this, he was Regional Manager of the Canadian Urban Institute (CUI) in Cuba and the Caribbean (1999-2010), where he gained ample on-site experience in managing, coordinating and implementing international development and local government capacity-building activities, and Consultant and Trainer for UN-HABITAT Localising Agenda 21 Program in Cuba (2005-2008). As a Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) consultant he carried out the studies, Canadian Universities in Cuba (2011) and a follow-up study, Civil Society in Cuba and Canadian Linkages (2012).

Rafael received his PhD (A.B.D) in Economics from the University of Florida and a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from Havana Polytechnic Institute (ISPAJE). He currently shares his time between Havana and Los Angeles, California.

For more information, contact Rafael Betancourt at rbetancourt@soleconomics.com

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