Ashoka Visionary Program for Executives

An in-person executive leadership program running over the course of 9 months, to learn how to become a leader of change and solve societal problems in an entrepreneurial way.

Course dates & times:

Next cohort in Vienna: October 2023 – June 2024 

Applications will close soon! 

About the learning journey

This program was created to fill a gap: the lack of programs teaching changemaking skills in an entrepreneurial and immersive way and creating a space for changemakers to co-create. The 9-month learning journey consists of 7 modules that last two days each and cover the life cycle of a social enterprise. During each module, experts on the respective topic pass on know-how, practical experience, and share personal stories. Experts include Ashoka Fellows and other world-class social entrepreneurs as well as academic experts from Ashoka’s network of partner universities. 

Participants can choose to work together with an Ashoka Fellow or another leading social entrepreneur. Alternatively, they can work on their own impact challenges in co-creation with a diverse team. 

Prototyped and operated out of the Ashoka Austria office, the Visionary Program is offered in three regions: Central and Eastern Europe, East Africa, and the Mediterranean. The modules include workshops, team-building exercises, pitches, and evening events with space for networking, reflections, and thoughtful exchange. The speakers, contributors and content details of the program vary per region. 

Learning objectives:

  • Acquire innovative tools and strategies for systems change in one comprehensive learning journey. 
  • Connect to a community of peers, meet Ashoka Fellows, and learn how groundbreaking social entrepreneurs are creating a better world. 
  • Work together with an Ashoka Fellow or another leading social entrepreneur, or on your own impact challenges in co-creation with a diverse team. 
  • Put your learnings into practice, combining entrepreneurial success with social impact to solve societal problems in ways you hadn’t thought of before. 
  • Become part of our global Visionary Program Alumni network that connects changemakers and their ideas.

Who this is for

Executives and leaders of change from all sectors accelerating social impact initiatives in their environment. Pioneers striving for new careers, business and social impact pathways in society.

Our participants include:

  • Ashoka Fellows
  • Current and future social entrepreneurs
  • Representatives of the corporate world and the public sector, civil society/NGOs, foundations, and impact founders
  • Highly motivated professionals

Please note that a minimum of 5 years of work experience is required to apply.

Practical information


  • Part-time for 9 months (7 modules of 2 days each)  
  • 15 days of in-person sessions (Friday – Saturday)  
  • Tailored fieldwork with a social entrepreneur 
  • Pre-readings and small exercises in preparation for the upcoming module 


Next cohort in Vienna: October 2023 – June 2024 


This is an intensive journey where participants meet in person seven times over the course of nine months and create strong connections and collaborations. This program costs EUR 10,000 excl. VAT. Stipends are available for leaders from the foundation, corporate and NGO sectors. Selected Ashoka Fellows join for a reduced fee of EUR 1,000. 


You can find out more about the Program by visiting the Ashoka Visionary Program website.

Module 1 - Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation

Spotting opportunities in the emerging market of social entrepreneurship for new system-changing ideas, social innovations, and collaborations.

Module 2 - Impact & Social Business Modeling

Applying an impact model and impact-oriented business plan for strategy & organizational development. 

Module 3 - Funding & Scaling Social Innovation

Developing ways to scale and maximize social impact; under- standing financing approaches to increase readiness and to attract funding and financing.

Module 4 - Wellbeing & New Leadership

Understanding leadership styles that leverage the changemaker potential of employees within private companies, public institutions, and welfare organizations.

Module 5 - Systems Change

Mobilizing stakeholders, facilitating impact-oriented collaboration and decision-making, and enabling systems change.

Module 6 – Partnerships & Co-Creation

Managing organizations; scouting for, attracting, recruiting, managing, and rewarding the best talents.

Module 7 - The Art Of Story-Telling & Marketing

Designing, crafting and communicating success stories, leveraging the power of mass media, and utilizing social media channels.

Module Leaders & Facilitators