In times of crisis it becomes clear what we really need. This crisis of Covid-19 is forcing Europe to face the harsh inequalities and systemic failures embedded across societies. This moment calls us to reflect on the kind of world we want to build as we move ahead. The hope for learning from this and building a more positive future has never been higher. To avoid going back to business as usual (or worse) once the crisis is over and to channel this hope into community action, we need to show alternatives for what is possible now. We need one strong, resilient community of system change leaders. The virtual space "Ashoka Europe Live" is the opportunity for the Ashoka Europe community to prepare for this phase and work together on pan-European initiatives to address the crisis and the post-emergency system change we see and know is needed.
We got together online to co-create solutions! It's in the spirit of #AloneTogether and #ResilienceToImpact.
What is Ashoka Europe Live?
It's the virtual experience of Ashoka Europe Fellowship to co-create on ecosystemic initiatives to foster system changing social entrepreneurship in this historic moment of crisis. This virtual space is there to learn from the insights, solutions and systemic approaches of our Fellow and start pan-European initiatives in a co-creative manner!
Who is it for?
Please join one of our online co-creation sessions, if you are...
- an Ashoka Fellow working (or wanting to work) on a pan-European initiative to address the systemic challenges of the situation around COVID-19. You might find partners in crime in one of our calls!
- a partner of Ashoka or a member of the Ashoka Support Network (ASN) wishing to collaborate on an ecosystem initiative in the context of this crisis.
What you have in common is the desire, idea (or already a plan) to co-create pan-European solutions to address this crisis.
If you have a direct need or a question about this, please reach out to us directly!
When & What?
We offered 3 sessions to identify European initiatives that are highly needed right now:
- Wednesday, 8th of April, 2020, 10-11:15am CET KICK-OFF
- Wednesday, 22nd of April, 2020, 10-11:30am CET: Pan-European action (see concrete topics below)
- Wednesday, 6th of May, 2020, 10-11:30am CET: Pan European action
Concrete areas of work - with a shared systemic vision:
In the first call, on Wednesday April 8th, we have started to take a system change perspective on the current crisis and began to assess together the longer-term systemic risks that Europe will be faced with. We have used this Matrix to guide us in this thinking. From this first brainstorm with our community we have identified three main streams of collective work.
1. Tearing down the sector barriers.
The COVID-19 emergency is highlighting the interconnection between all individuals, ecosystems and sectors. If one is vulnerable, we all are vulnerable. Working in silos results in inefficiency of actions, waste of resources and larger inequalities. Ashoka Fellows have been teaching us this for decades: businesses, civil society organizations, governments, education institutions and funders need to work together as one to foster social innovation for the good of all. How can we foster multi-stakeholder multi-sectorial collaboration to enhance social innovation in Europe in this historic moment?
2. Democracy, transparency and accountability.
“In this time of crisis, we face two particularly important choices. The first is between totalitarian surveillance and citizen empowerment. The second is between nationalist isolation and global solidarity” (Yuval Noah Harari). The coronavirus epidemic is showing us the importance of a bilateral trust relationship between institutions and citizens for efficient responses. Transparency of governments, accountability of communications, and strong democratic foundations are put at risk in many countries. People are becoming more aware of their role and impact as citizens. How can we strengthen our democracies, guarantee transparency and accountability of institutions and media, empower civil society, through the work of Ashoka Fellows, in this challenging times?
3. New Leadership, wellbeing, changemaking.
New forms of organizing and working have been spreading fast in the past weeks. People of Europe have been juggling with different skills to address lock-down, loneliness, work and life balance, leading their team at distance, engaging their communities virtually, homeschooling children, co-leading and finding prompt solutions to address the crisis. Ashoka Fellows show us through their work that to drive big positive change on a system level they need to create a space where everyone can participate in co-creating change. How do we innovate the way we lead, the way we organize our communities and organizations, taking care of people’s wellbeing and leveraging their intrapreneurial spirit particularly in this time of crisis?
Deep-dive conversations around Fellows’ solutions in these areas & identifying the key roles
On Wednesday April 22nd, we have deep-dived into these three topics and some concrete ideas have emerged. ASNs and partners had the opportunity to hear about the innovative and breathtaking approached that our Fellows have taken in this time of crisis and provided new insights over the key systemic challenges that Europe will be faced with.
We are now in the phase of crystalizing these ideas into concrete collective actions: where can we collaborate as a community? What role can each of us play? These are the questions that will guide our next and last call together. The answers will guide us in the next months, as the Ashoka Europe Fellowship team will try to facilitate and support collective action around the projects and ideas of our community.
Please reach out if you have an idea for collaboration!
And you are very welcome to join even if you missed the call(s).