The Rockefeller Foundation-Acumen Food Systems Fellowship is an intensive, one-year leadership development program offered through Acumen Academy, the world’s school for social change. The inaugural Food Systems Fellowship will introduce moral leadership concepts to a globally diverse cohort of 20 food systems leaders who are creating more inclusive, nourishing and regenerative food systems. With leading food systems facilitators, Fellows will participate in a blend of immersive seminars, workshops, and self-directed leadership experiments. The program will combine in-person and virtual learning over the course of the Fellowship year.
After Year 1 of the Fellowship, Food Systems Fellows will join Acumen’s global community of social innovators building a world without poverty and injustice.
Year 1: Fellowship year
- Join a globally diverse cohort of experienced food systems leaders in a rigorous year-long experience
- Improve your capacity to innovate and drive change within food systems by practicing essential systems leadership skills
- Learn via a mix of immersive seminars, workshops, and self-directed leadership experiments with the support of trained facilitators and world class experts
- Part-time — you stay in your job while participating in the program
- All program-related costs are covered by the Fellowship
- Bring examples from your work into the program to guide your learning, then take learnings from the program back to guide your work and create or increase impact
Beyond Year 1: What happens after the program
- Join a lifelong alumni community of over 1000 social innovators around the world — we call this community ‘The Foundry.’
- Access the resources and relationships to amplify your important work in architecting a just, inclusive, and sustainable world. This includes access to social innovators, funders, and mentors.
What makes a Fellow?
Fellows are extraordinary emerging systems leaders who dare to embrace the difficult journey of social change in food systems. You will be joining a cohort composed of individuals who will typically be on one of the following trajectories:
- Social Entrepreneurs: Founding or leading a for-profit or non-profit organization that provides critical goods or services to underserved populations within food systems.
- Social Intrapreneurs: Creating innovative solutions to tackle food systems challenges from within an existing institution by shifting its culture and/or strategy, and building new collaborations.
- Organizational Builders: Supporting the growth of an organization focused on alleviating food systems challenges by building the internal structures, and processes that enable the organization to pursue its purpose.
- Public Sector Leaders: Reimagining public policy and leveraging the government services to drive change within food systems.
- Bridge Builders: Finding and connecting organizations and leaders to discover commonalities and activate a shared vision for food systems transformation.
Our three-stage online selection process is designed to understand your capacity, willingness and potential to grow as leaders who will be at the forefront of systems change within food systems.
- Apply — tell us about your journey in food systems work so far and your vision moving forward. 14 Oct – 1 Dec 2021
- Complete Assignments — show us your capacity for leadership and the impact of your work. 3-17 Jan 2022
- Attend the Selection Conference — connect with food systems finalists across the world and explore why this is the right time for you to be a Fellow. 12-13 Mar 2022
- The Rockefeller Foundation – Acumen Food Systems Fellows 2022 Cohort Announcement — Apr 2022
- Immerse Yourself in the Food Systems Fellowship — Apr-Oct 2022
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