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Our program helps youth discover the field of social entrepreneurship and take their first steps as social entrepreneurs. Since 2009, it has fostered young social entrepreneurs in more than 25 countries.

Program Outline

  1. Kick-off

    Our yearlong program kicks-off! Join us at our yearly kick-off event to meet local social entrepreneurs and get a glimpse of this year’s program.

  2. Discovery

    Our free events and workshops allow participants to explore the world of social entrepreneurship and start building an idea for a social venture. We also provide support on applications to our incubation.

  3. Application Deadline

    Applications to our incubation are submitted and our jury members begin their review based on a set of tried and tested criteria.

  4. Incubation

    The most promising ventures set out to prototype and validate business and impact models with the support of experts and mentors, going from ideas to fully-fledged ventures. Venture teams also film and upload a pitch video online for the general public to vote for, as part of SIA’s global Community Voting campaign.

  5. Award Ceremony

    The most promising ventures from the incubation are awarded pre-seed funding and get access to publicity and high value networks. Ventures with the most votes in the Community Voting campaign take home the community award.

  6. Summit

    Winners are invited to the SIA Summit, a global gathering of all winning ventures for three days of connection, skill-development, and celebration. SIA covers accommodation and travel costs for the event which takes place in a new city every year.

Discovery Phase

The first part of our program is the discovery phase. We organize free events and workshops that serve as open spaces to discover how to create a social venture or build a meaningful career with impact, and generate an idea for a project. We also provide feedback to those already building a social venture and help them prepare their application to our incubation. All applications are then reviewed by a panel of judges made up of local experts who choose the most promising ventures to participate in the incubation program.
  • Artboard 5
    Session Participation
    68.000+ Global workshop and event attendees since SIA’s founding in 2009
  • Incubation Applications
    5.838 Applications to our local incubation programs since SIA’s founding in 2009
  • Content Relevance
    83.1% Percentage of participants that found the educational formats interesting and relevant in last year’s edition of SIA

Participant Experiences

  • SIA participants have a different vision of the future. In a certain sense, they are outside classical frameworks of thought, offering constructive solutions to familiar issues. As a mentor, I help them go through all the mandatory stages of business planning, expanding the possibilities of their original idea. I sincerely believe in the SIA community – their thoughts are pure and their ideas are bright.

    SIA Mentor Yulia Dmitrieva Manager JD Expert
  • SIA is the best education program at a global level. SIA workshops empowered me to support developing social entrepreneurship in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

    Participant Nemanja Davidović Workshop Participant

Incubation Phase

Selected ventures embark on an all-encompassing journey that gives the support needed to build a successful venture. Participants receive individualized support from mentors and experts, make meaningful connections with other young people, and receive their first exposure through our global community voting campaign.
  • Venture Preparation
    181 Ventures that went through our local incubation programs in last year’s edition of SIA
  • Solving the Problem
    94,4% Percentage of ventures that have a deep understanding of how they will get their product/service to the target group and funders effectively
  • Long-Term Viability
    70,0% Percentage of ventures that have identified a strong, viable model to generate long term income for their business

Participant Experiences

  • Participating in SIA helped us in so many ways. Most notably, various SIA experts helped turn our idea into an actual venture. Winning the community award was an extra push for us, as we got first credits in the startup world that we could build on.

    Winner Timo Nothdurft Co-Founder money:care
  • SIA‘s community of likeminded people does not compete, but support and enrich each other to make the world a better place, together.

    Finalist Kate Lee Co-Founder Mindful Generation

Award Phase

The incubation ends with the Award ceremony. Winners of our internationally-recognized award are granted a lump sum of pre-seed funding to help cover their venture’s initial costs. Our award also gives founders exposure to a wide variety of stakeholders both nationally and internationally, while serving as proof of reliability to potential funding partners. Finally, winners of the award come together at our yearly Summit to celebrate the end of the program and the start of their journey.
  • Global Impact
    1.363 Total ventures that went through SIA incubation programs
  • Pre-seed Funding
    111.000+ Total award money granted to participants of the incubation
  • Impact-oriented Career
    83,1% Percentage of alumni not working on their SIA project who are now working in impact-oriented positions

Implement SIA



Our extensive network of like-minded strategic and ecosystem partners supports the success of our work around the world.

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Our impact

Since 2009, we’ve impacted thousands of young agents of change in more than 25 countries.

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