Frequently Asked Questions

What makes Ashoka different?

Ashoka introduces new ways to address the economic and social problems that our communities face. We passionately seek the world’s best social entrepreneurs. With over three decades of experience in the social sector, Ashoka stands in a unique position to drive systemic change across the world. 

Who is a social entrepreneur?

Social entrepreneurs are individuals with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social problems. They are ambitious and persistent, tackling major social issues and offering new ideas for wide-scale change. 

What makes Ashoka Fellows unique?

Ashoka Fellows are visionaries who develop innovative solutions that fundamentally change how society operates. They address problems by transforming systems, scaling their solutions, and pushing society to take a giant leap forward. Similar to top business entrepreneurs who redefine industries, social entrepreneurs persist to achieve their goal of systemic change no matter how long the transformation takes. Ashoka Fellows are creative yet pragmatic, constantly adjusting and changing, with a committed vision that endures until they have succeeded.

What does the Fellowship offer?

The Ashoka Fellowship is a dynamic global community of leading social entrepreneurs who deliver high-impact solutions to society’s most pressing problems. The rapidly growing Fellowship network allows Fellows to leverage their ideas, collaborate, and enhance their innovations, achieving far more together than individually. Ashoka accelerates Fellows’ progress as an individual, a leader of an organization, a participant in group collaborative initiatives, and a member of a global community of peers. 

Do you work with universities and youth?

Absolutely. In fact, we are devoted to accelerating new and effective approaches to high quality social entrepreneurship through teaching, research, and action in higher education.

I love Ashoka, how do I help support your work?

Ashoka would not exist without the support of people like you. Each donation to Ashoka is an investment in social change. Your contribution will help us to identify exceptional social entrepreneurs around the world, support them in their work, and expand our programs to truly create an Everyone A Changemaker world. 

Can someone from Ashoka speak at our upcoming event?

Please email with a brief description of the event, the audience you expect, the location and date of the event and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Does Ashoka provide grants or academic fellowships?

No. Ashoka is a 501(c)3 organization, not a foundation or grant-making organization. Ashoka does not fund research, special projects, staff positions, or scholarships. Financial support is available only to Fellows.

Is Ashoka an incubator for emerging social entrepreneurs?

No. However, we work closely with organizations that invest in social entrepreneurs at the initial “idea” stage. Ashoka looks for social entrepreneurs who have tested their ideas and are poised to move on to a new level of social impact.


Who is an Ashoka Fellow?