Swedish Institute Impact Pioneers ’24: Enabling Impact Entrepreneurship Program

Swedish Institute Impact Pioneers ’24: Enabling Impact Entrepreneurship Program

Are you dedicated to nurturing and growing the ecosystem for impact entrepreneurship? Impact Pioneers is a leadership programme that welcomes you to exchange experiences with an international network of peers and gain first hand insights and experience from Sweden’s most successful impact entrepreneurship leaders and environments. The programme mixes online learning modules with a one-week onsite summit in Stockholm.

Impact entrepreneurship refers to the efforts to create, develop, and sustain new business that pursue environmental and/or social goals as an integral part of the business model, along with financial success. It is a global phenomenon in many ways rewriting the rules of traditional business with its much broader and bolder ambition. It is a potential driver of both economic and social development, as well as a force that can help accelerate the global green transition. If nurtured and empowered, it has great potential to bring forward new businesses needed today and in the future, bringing sustainable innovation, growth and jobs to local communities. 

Impact Pioneers’24 seeks to strengthen leaders and enablers working in organisations and networks that want to promote the nurture and growth of local impact entrepreneurship. The programme aims to grow participants skillset through exchange of experiences, perspectives, cases, tools and frameworks. A central component of the programme is also networking across an international cohort of peers and with the Swedish impact entrepreneurship ecosystem. This component is key, as is the programme hopes to plant seeds for future partnerships, to the benefit of impact startups and scaleups as they seek to expand their growth, reach and overall impact.

The longterm programme objective is connected the SDG 8, target 8.3, which includes promotion of activities and policies that support entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation to encourage the formalization and growth of micro-, small- and mediumsized enterprises, ultimately contributing to job creation and sustainable economic, social and environmental development.

SI Enabling Impact Entrepreneurship Program

Application DeadlineMay 31, 2024
School to studySwedish Institute
SponsorSwedish Institute
GenderMen and Women

Benefits of SI Enabling Impact Entrepreneurship Program

Impact Pioneers offers participants the opportunity to:

  • Grow from the exchange of experiences with an international community of peers.
  • Be supported and inspired by new insights from the Impact entrepreneurship and Impact innovation forefront, such as practical cases, tools and frameworks.
  • Get first-hand experience of the Impact entrepreneurship community in Stockholm, recognised as one of the leading ecosystems in the impact entrepreneurship domain.
  • Build long-term relations with Swedish foreign missions and Swedish Impact entrepreneurs that seek to expand their international reach, growth and impact.

Requirements for SI Enabling Impact Entrepreneurship Program

The application is open to entrepreneurship ecosystem leaders and practitioners who work in organizations and networks that want to develop their support for entrepreneurs with businesses related to sustainablility and green transition. More specifially, we imagine applicants to work as:

  • Startup hub/accelerator/incubation founders and managers
  • Tech and innovation hub founders and managers
  • University accelerator/incubator managers
  • Public sector employees involved in work that supports impact entrepreneurship

The application is open to 22 programme countries (applicants must be a citizen and resident of one of them):

AFRICA: Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Uganda, South Africa, Zambia
ASIA: Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam
EUROPE: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Sweden, Ukraine*

*Ukrainian applicants who reside outside of Ukraine are also eligible to apply.

Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a citizen and resident of one of the 22 programme countries
  • Work in an organisation or business systematically working to nurture and grow entrepreneurs.
  • Have the mandate to develop new international partnerships for your organisation/business.
  • Have a good working knowledge of both written and spoken English.
  • Be willing to actively participate, provide support and share their experience and knowledge with other participants.
  • Have identified opportunities and challenges that could be worked on during the programme to help their organisation improve its contribution to the local entrepreneurship ecosystem

An applicant’s home organisation/business must also meet the following requirements:

  • Be locally owned and based in one of the programme countries.
  • Be somehow hosting/coaching (or be in the process of starting up hosting/coaching of) entrepreneurs with business ideas that are related to sustainability and green transition.
  • Run the organization/business with focus on contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals.

Selection Process

Programme structure and format
Commitment and expectations
Impact Pioneers is scheduled to run across eight weeks, from late August through October 2024. A final schedule and timeline will be provided upon acceptance to the programme.

  • Participants should be prepared to spend around two hours per week in online activities such as participating in sharing sessions and working an idea for a collaboration project.
  • As a participant, you should also be able to join the one week summit onsite in Stockholm in October.

Participation in Impact Pioneers is free of charge. The Swedish institute arranges and covers costs related to:

  • Learning programme
  • Flights to and from Sweden for the Sweden week onsite visit
  • Accommodation, meals, transportation and insurance while in Sweden

Programme components:

  1. Online networking, sharing and masterclass sessions (weekly, starting late August/early September)
    Networking and sharing sessions will be conducted online in both large and small group formats (organised by region and mixed). Other than the social element, they will include case sharing and high-quality masterclasses, highlighting latest developments within the field of impact entrepreneurship, sustainable development and green transition. These sessions aim to offer participants new perspectives, cases, tools and frameworks that will strengthen their impact entrepreneurship management skills.
  2. Sweden week, onsite (October 21-25, excluding travel days)
    During this week, programme participants will gather in Stockholm Sweden. The week will be an interactive and immersive onsite experience, offering a unique opportunity to network with peers and engage with Swedish impact entrepreneurship leaders and experts. The week will feature workshops, field visits to leading innovation hubs and impact entrepreneurship environments in Stockholm. This experience aims to strengthen participants’ impact entrepreneurship network, and create new connections with the Swedish entrepreneurship ecosystem. Participation in Sweden week is exclusive to participants who have successfully completed the programme’s previous components.
  3. Way forward. In the final component of Impact Pioneers, participants make a plan on how to put their new skills and network into action. They share new perspectives, cases, tools and frameworks with colleagues and stakeholders in their local ecosystems, develop ideas for future partnerships across the international peer group and establish further relationships with the Swedish embassy and related network in their home country.

Programme timeline 2024

  • Late August/early September: Kick-off and weekly online activity/sessions
  • 21-25 October (excluding travel days): 1 week onsite experience in Stockholm, Sweden
  • Early November: End of weekly online activity/sessions (collaboration/exchange to continue in other ways)

Application assessment criteria
The applications will be evaluated by the Swedish Insititute to secure that formal requirements are met. If these are all met, a further review will be conducted by the Swedish Institute and an external reference board. The assessment will take the following review and criteria into account:

  • Candidate qualifications and ambition fit to the objectives of the programme
  • Organisation qualifications and ambition fit to the objectives of the programme
  • Overall cohort composition. As the open call is open to participants from 22 countries, we must consider distrubution of the 50-70 spots across these geographies, limiting our intake per country.

Application Deadline

May 31, 2024

How to Apply

Interested and qualified? Go to Swedish Institute on to apply

Only applicants who have submitted a complete application will be considered for the programme.

The application consists of questions to assess formal requirements along with personal motivation. You will also be asked to submit a 60-120 second video and upload your most recent resume/CV.

Please carefully review the  application overview, in order to be best prepared to submit your application. The overview gathers all questions and requirements in one place.

Once you have reviewed the application overview and prepared, you should submit your application through our application portal (provided by Dreamapply): Impact Pioneers ’24 – Application form

These are the steps you need to go through to submit your application:

  1. Register your profile in the application portal (DreamApply)
  2. Select ‘Impact Pioneers ’24:Enabling Impact entrepreneurship’ as the programme you would like to apply for (open for application 1 May – 31 May (23:59 CET).
  3. Click on the “Apply Now!” button, and answer the questions for the different sections (found in the left-hand menu). Please review the application overview document beforehand to know what questions to expect.
  4. As part of the process, be ready to upload a short pre-recorded video and your most recent resume/CV as per the instructions in the portal. Please review the application overview document beforehand to ensure this will be a smooth process for you.
  5. After you’ve submitted your application, you’ll receive a confirmation to your inbox in the application portal (DreamApply).

For more details, visit SI website

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