Are you a visionary and innovator transforming the food system to expand access to good food for all? Apply today for the Rockefeller Foundation-Acumen Food Systems Fellowship to build your leadership skills and join a cohort of other food changemakers.
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 Food Systems Fellowship will introduce moral leadership concepts to a globally diverse cohort of 20 food systems builders who are creating more equitable, 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.
What will you learn and do?
Embrace the gradual and meaningful process of creating systemic change within food systems at the personal, organizational, and societal levels:
- Personal – Examine the identities, values, and choices that have shaped your journey until now and cultivate a deeper understanding of yourself and your work within food systems. Explore the meaning of a just society and the moral and historical foundation of social change through text-based dialogue.
- Organizational – Cultivate the ability to lead effectively when opposing but interdependent values are in tension. Understand how to lead diverse stakeholders through recurring and complex challenges.
- Systemic – Question your assumptions and beliefs about leading effective change in food systems. Navigate the food system you operate in using moral imagination.
- Foundation’s curriculum draws on powerful leadership frameworks, tools, and approaches, including Adaptive Leadership, Authentic Voice, Good Society Readings, Polarities Management, Immunity to Change, and Systems Thinking.
Year 1: Fellowship year
- Join a globally diverse cohort of experienced food systems builders 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 1,000 social innovators around the world — the Foundation calls 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.
- Although many of Foundation’s Fellows do work in social enterprises, the Foundation encourages applicants working with any kind of initiative that is connected to food systems work. The Foundation is looking for people that have worked for at least five years in the food systems space and have a vision for building nourishing, regenerative, and equitable food systems.
- Fellows go on multiple career paths and personal journeys, but many of the Fellows they’ve seen over the years include:
- 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.
- Above all, the Foundation is looking for systems leaders with an entrepreneurial mindset who understand that it will take all of them to tackle the greatest food systems challenges of current time.
- There is no age requirement as the Foundation does not believe Fellows need to be within a certain age range to create impact. The Foundation do look for individuals who hold influence in the food systems initiatives and communities they work with, so that they are able to create change where they work.
- The Foundation is looking for individuals who currently have a leadership role in one or more organizations or initiatives that are committed to food systems work on a full-time basis. The Foundation will consider applicants who are working part-time on an exceptional basis, as long as they demonstrate a full-time commitment to food systems work.
For more information, visit https://fellowship.acumenacademy.org/foodsystems