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Commons Latam is a six-month Ashoka U program that aims to strengthen social innovation and the training of change agents in Latin American universities, through the preparation of groups of academics, managers and staff from institutions of higher education.
How to bring innovation from theory to practice? The participating people have the support of mentors and experts with international experience, who guide the learning, evaluation and, subsequently, the application of good innovation practices, obtaining as a result defined projects and concrete plans to implement in their institutions.
The process is made up of 7 main modules, with topics among which are: innovation trends and best practices, mapping and objectives, project management and monitoring. The last module corresponds to a period of 3 months in which each team implements the project designed during the course.
Commons Latam generates profound changes in education teams and their strategies. The acceleration of an institutional social innovation project, the generation of interactions between inter-institutional peers and access to international experts allows learning through practical application and the social and environmental impact on the environment. Among the benefits, each person and team designs a Theory of Change that guides the measurement of results and impact of the institution or of a specific program.
The program grants an official certificate from Ashoka U to the participating people and invites them to generate networks between institutions that seek to promote social innovation from academia. Additionally, teams can access the Alumni Commons network and the Ashoka U network.
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Commons Latam has strengthened the implementation of social innovation agendas in Higher Education Institutions in different Latin American countries, such as Chile, Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Argentina, Peru, and Ecuador, and in European countries, such as Portugal, Spain, and Finland.