Ashoka’s Competition -Transforming Schools to Teach What Matters

Deadline: 30 March 2012
Open to: Teachers, principals, parents, students, and other innovators
Prize: Two Judge’s Awards: Cash prize of US $5,000 each, one People’s Choice Award: Cash prize of US $5,000 and other of total amount of $110,000


Ashoka Changemakers® provides the tools and resources to empower everyone to contribute to a better world. The community’s mission is to grow new ideas through transparency and collaboration, a process of Open Growth. No matter where you are starting, or where you are going, Changemakers makes it easier to share an idea, track progress, communicate with supporters, and invest in global change.

Ashoka is launching a global initiative to ensure that children master empathy, enabling them to be effective citizens, leaders and trailblazers. Empathy is a critical skill in a world defined by rapid change – one that is foundational to the social, teamwork and leadership skills required to contribute successfully to society.

The main aims of this award are to:

  • Encourage social and emotional development
  • Promote community diversity and a respect for differences
  • Unlock new ways of viewing problems, opening the door to a new world of potential solutions
  • Address bullying or aggression in ways that advance understanding of others’ perspectives
  • Champion children as real-world problem solvers rather than simply bystanders

Prepare to Enter or Nominate an individual, organization, or partnership with a solution online starting now.


Activating Empathy: Transforming Schools to Teach What Matters, the challenge is open to teachers, principals, parents, students, and other innovators to share ideas – whether by a project, a program, or a new learning experience – for advancing empathy in education.


More than $110,000 in cash and in-kind prizes are available through entering the “Activating Empathy” competition. There will be two Judge’s award of cash prize of US $5,000 each selected by a panel of expert judges. Moreover, there will also be One People’s Choice Award of Cash prize of US $5,000 selected by voting on


Online competition submissions are accepted until March 30, 2012. At any time before this deadline, competition participants are encouraged to revise their entries based on questions and insights that they receive in the Changemakers discussion. Participation in the discussion enhances an entrant’s prospects in the competition, and provides the Changemakers community and judges an opportunity to understand the entrant’s project more completely.

There are four main phases in the competition:

  • Entry Stage, January 19 – March 30, 2012: Entries can be submitted until 5PM EDT on the day of the deadline, and throughout this stage anyone can participate in an online review discussion with the entrants.
    • Early Entry Deadline, February 23, 2012: Entries received by 5PM EDT on the day of the deadline are eligible for the Early Entry prize.
    • Entry Deadline, March 30, 2012, 5PM EDT.
  • Online Review and Finalist Selection, January 19 – March 30, 2012: Online review and discussion continues. Simultaneously, a team of Ashoka staff and evaluators nominate the best and most innovative entries as finalists.
  • Winners Announced, June 12, 2012: The competition winners—the People’s Choice winner selected by the Changemakers online community, the two Judges’ Awards selected by the panel of judges, and the winners of the “special focus” prizes—will be announced on this day.

For more information, please see The Official Website.

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