Democracy and participation, Building capacity to re-envision a new Europe.

Co-creating Cross shortlist


Who is behind this?

Georg Schön

Ashoka Central and Eastern Europe


Idea Sketch | Proposal


Idea pitch

Central and Eastern Europe is faced with a deep crisis. Now more than ever cross-sectoral innovative solutions co-created between civil society actors, business, policy makers, welfare organizations and leading thinkers are needed. A new immersion program brings together this "unlikely" group of senior leaders who are immersed into the universe of social innovators. Hands-on, proven tools allow them to rethink their roles and co-create their own innovative solutions for a new Europe.

Where will your idea take place?

Vienna, Central and Eastern Europe

Why does Europe need your idea?

In Central and Eastern Europe right-wing populism is on the rise and increasing anti-European sentiments, xenophobia and a de-legitimization of civil society and state capture are becoming the new “normal”.
As civil society is losing its clout, its actors need to come up with new approaches and solutions and build a new infrastructure for social change. This is easier said than done and requires new skill sets, room for reflection and inspiration from unlikely corners.

What is your impact?

The program is sowing the seeds of concrete new solutions that build towards pro-European, tolerant and open societies in CEE. It brings together diverse actors over the course of 9 months and equips them with the practical tools necessary to generate positive change and empower many more people to generate change for themselves through concrete projects.

How do you get there?

The program is built on the strategic insight of our work in CEE in the last 20 years, that in order to bring real change to society we need social and business entrepreneurs, policy makers and policy thinkers, philanthropic and profit-driven capital to come together.
It brings together these diverse actors in seven interactive 2-day sessions over the course of 9 months and equips them with the practical tools necessary to generate concrete solutions for positive change, such as how to scale an idea, how to ensure and measure its impact and create alliances beyond sectors. The group of participants will be made up of 10 accomplished social entrepreneurs and 15 senior leaders from policy, business, welfare organizations and think-tanks.

What is your story?


Who are you doing it for?

The target group of the program are accomplished, influential social and business entrepreneurs, philanthropic and profit-driven investors and grant-makers, policy makers and policy thinkers from Central and Eastern Europe who want to explore new ways of creating impact and bring entrepreneurial spirit to their organizations and work.

What makes your idea stand apart?

We contribute to (re)building and securing a pluralistic space in European societies by creating cross-sectoral interaction, learning and co-creation between innovative “thinkers” and “do´ers” with a social mission and leverage the extensive network and pool of innovative solutions of Ashoka in the region and Europe to ensure impact and quality.

€ 50000,-

Funding requested from Advocate Europe

€ 150000,-

Total budget

Major expenses

Program Management (staff time) 25.000€ Academic Director (staff time) 15.000€ Speaker/Faculty travel and fees (40 speakers) 35.000€ Locations and catering (14 days, 25 participants) 15.000€ Public Relations 10.000€ Stipends for participants (á 10.000€) 50.000€

What do you need from the Advocate Europe community?

Would you like to know more about the program and become a participant? Contact us! Ideas for speakers and solutions we should integrate? Contact us:



Idea created on March 4, 2016
Last edit on Oct. 30, 2017

Write comment