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We pioneered the field 40 years ago and have supported more than 3,800 Ashoka Fellows across the globe, guiding them to grow unexpected ideas into transformative social progress. Time and again we’ve seen these extraordinary changemakers and their teams move mountains. Ashoka accompanies them along their journey – with catalytic investments, with strategic guidance, and with an unmatched peer-to-peer community.

New! Check out our Year at a Glance 

Ashoka Fellows in the U.S. with system-changing ideas*
Raised and invested by Ashoka in U.S. social entrepreneurs alone since 2001.
People reached directly per Fellow on average (600,000
reached indirectly).
Of Fellows have influenced national policy and/or had their idea replicated by independent groups.
Of Fellows in the U.S. say that Ashoka has significantly increased their impact.
Ranked top 5 most influential NGO in the world for the second year in a row (2017 & 2018 - NGO Advisor)

*Systems change = changing rules, roles, behavior and norms so that the root cause of a problem gets tackled. Read Embracing Complexity for a deeper dive. 


Our network
To date, Ashoka has selected over 3,800 social entrepreneurs in 90+ countries, whose systems-changing innovations solve deep-rooted social problems.
Ashoka Fellows worldwide
– Canada
– Argentina
– Belize
– Brazil
– Bolivia
– Colombia
– Costa Rica
– Chile
– Ecuador
– El Salvador
– Guatemala
– Haiti
– Honduras
– Mexico
– Nicaragua
– Paraguay
– Peru
– Uruguay
– Venezuela
– Benin
– Botswana
– Burkina Faso
– Cameroon
– Ghana
– Guinea-Bissau
– Ivory Coast
– Kenya
– Liberia
– Malawi
– Mali
– Mozambique
– Niger
– Nigeria
– Rwanda
– Senegal
– South Africa
– Tanzania
– Togo
– Uganda
– Zambia
– Zimbabwe
– Bangladesh
– Hong Kong
– India
– Indonesia
– Japan
– Malaysia
– Nepal
– Pakistan
– Philippines
– Sinagpore
– South Korea
– Sri Lanka
– Thailand
– Timor Leste
– Afghanistan
– Egypt
– Israel
– Jordan
– Kuwait
– Lebanon
– Libya
– Morocco
– Tunisia
– Saudi Arabia
– United Arab Emirates
– Austria
– Belgium
– Czechia
– Denmark
– France
– Germany
– Greece
– Hungary
– Iceland
– Ireland
– Italy
– Latvia
– Lithuania
– Netherlands
– Norway
– Poland
– Portugal
– Romania
– Slovakia
– Spain
– Sweden
– Switzerland
– Turkey
– United Kingdom


North America




Middle East & North Africa


South America




Ashoka Fellows are
a diverse community

Field of work






Economic Development




Civic Participation


Human Rights



Female (elected in the U.S. since 2016)


Male (elected in the U.S. since 2016)

The Ashoka effect
We surveyed all of our fellows on the impact that Ashoka has had on them.


Identifying and supporting
these individuals often gives them their first significant source of funding

92% of fellows report the Ashoka stipend helped them focus full time on their idea.​


Ashoka gives Fellows access to a powerful global network, and helps them think in system-change terms that leads to changes in their strategy.

On average, Fellows report collaborating or partnering with 4 other Ashoka Fellows after being elected.

86% report that Ashoka helped them see their work at a systems change level, and of those Fellows, 92% made changes to their strategy

89% of Fellows report that Ashoka changed how they see themselves as a leader, and of those Fellows, 94% are leading differently as a result.


After election Ashoka Fellows are changing public policy, legislation, and market systems

93% have achieved change in market systems

74% have achieved change in legislation or influenced public policy

“I’m continuing to learn from the Fellows, because we all face similar challenges and there are solutions that we end up bringing to the table together. I never had access to those kinds of folks, or to that kind of space where we can cry together, be challenged together, dream together. It really has taken a role in my life.”

Denisa Livingston
Ashoka US Fellow

“When possibilities feel ended, Ashoka fellows show that they are endless. When we feel broken down, the Ashoka network helps break us open. And when our culture asks us to imagine worse, Ashoka asks us to imagine better.”

Andrew Slack
Ashoka US Fellow

“Ashoka is different. It seems weird to think that a fellowship that lifts up incredible people, who represent incredible communities, would be able to do so in the most humble of ways — but that’s how Ashoka moves.”

Raj Jayadev
Ashoka US Fellow
Growing impact
Ashoka focuses growing ideas, not growing organizations. Ashoka Fellows know that in order to spread their idea quickly and turn it into society’s new normal, they must use innovative strategies to get their idea into the hands of as many pollinators as possible.


of Fellows have
partnered with
schools or Universities


of Fellows have
partnered with local or national governments


of Fellows have actively encouraged others to replicate their idea or have open-sourced their idea


of Fellows have seen
their idea replicated by independent groups
Fellows in the news

“If one were to examine the forensics of significant impact in healthcare, education or the environment, they would often find the fingerprints of Ashoka”

Stuart Davidson
Sonen Capital Partner

“[Ashoka’s vision] represents a radical departure from a world in which, for millennia, elites have been telling most everyone else what to do.”

The New York Times

“Ashoka is a living encyclopedia of social innovation in every field around the world.”

Jimmy Wales
Founder of Wikipedia

“Team Ashoka delivers impact by being a changemaker for the changemakers – and in doing so, delivers a compelling bang for one’s philanthropic buck.”

James Jensen
The Jenesis Group

“The engaged global community of social entrepreneurs that Ashoka has fostered helps each one of them to have more impact than would have been possible individually.”

Pierre Omidyar
Ebay Founder