Acara is glad to announce the details of the Acara Summer Institute 2011 and Acara Corps Fellowship 2011 programs. We encourage all interested students to apply for these programs. Here are the details as Q&A. If you have additional questions, please leave a message here or reach out to Arun/Sri/anyone of us at Acara.
Acara Summer Institute 2011
The Acara Summer Institute (SI), a program of the Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota, will be held June 27-July 15 in Bangalore, India. The SI will be hosted by Honeywell, with participating organizations including Quicksand, India Institute of Management – Bangalore, Covenant Centre of Development (CCD), Samuha, InKlude Labs plus others.
Social entrepreneurs and leaders of socially-oriented organizations. Acara does not make a distinction about what constitutes a social entrepreneur. Acara develops leaders interested in social change by helping them to view their challenges through the eyes of an entrepreneur. These leaders may be in NGOs, businesses, or any other kind of organization, but all have the opportunity to be a change leader.
Acara-sponsored teams receive a substantial scholarship, please contact us for further details.
Acara does not recommend individual attendees but at least two attendees per team. If you want to bring more than two, please contact us. Teams must also have spent at least a week in the field in the community where they are planning their venture.
- Three to four days onsite with CCD or Samuha to observe in depth a successful social venture
- Two day design thinking workshop taught by Quicksand.
- Half day workshop on community relationships taught by Sridhar Pabbisetty.
- Half day workshop on rural innovation in India by Narayan Ramachandran, InKlude labs. Narayan is former managing director of Morgan Stanley Emerging Markets team.
- Several lectures from IIM-Bangalore faculty.
- Regular interactions with technical and marketing experts from Honeywell
- Interactions with venture experts from the University of Minnesota, including post the SI.
- A final presentation to a panel of potential investors.
Acara Corps Fellowship 2011
- Review and assessment of a CDM project (Clean Development Mechanism, ie global carbon credits): Study a CDM-funded changeover to more-efficient stoves in rural Indian households. The fellow will get to be part of a research team that is studying the health impacts of indoor air pollution due to use of traditional versus improved stoves. A social enterprise is carrying out a massive CDM-funded stove changeout program will be part of the exercise. The Acara fellowship would entail a study to see how both objectives of changing to efficient cookstoves can be financed by CDM’s in order to subsidize the cost to customer. We are also interested in how the existing venture could be broadened to include other ongoing social venture ideas.
- Media engagement of the social enterprise movement: At Acara we want to strategise our engagement with the various forms of media and disseminate our philosophy and approach. The assignment would involve research work on the best forms of social media campaign along & working out partnerships with the mainstream media on Acara programs.
- myRain: One of Acara’s incubatee’s who are piloting their drip irrigation sales distribution system in Uttara Khand have been working on their idea since last year. This assignment would evolve an on the ground perspective of rural marketing management in India, assessment of viability of drip irrigation in different terrains / vegetation and other variables.
- University – NGO relationship management: A leading university in India, and Acara participant, extends relationships with at least 100 civil society organisations in India. Acara’s crucial inputs comes from their understanding on the ground. This assignment would focus on strengthening our ties with NGO’s and creating a harmonic relationship between Acara students and them to build on each other’s strengths. An enriching experience awaits the fellows to work on creating a platform for exchange for students with civil society.
- Acara Challenge management: This fellowship helps you gain an understanding of what happens behind the scenes of the Acara Challenge. Get to be part of the team which prepares the ground for the upcoming fall semester challenge. The range of activities you would get to so are working with universities on the course curriculum preparation / designing program manager’s response matrix / scouting for mentors and subject matter experts etc.
- Intrapreneur: Here is an opportunity to be part of a conglomerate which is experimenting with a new idea within their R&D initiative. Learn the nuances of being part of a nascent idea (off grid energy) which is being prototyped into a large business unit/service to serve the BoP market.