Ashoka Social Financial Services Summer 2017 "Deep-Dive Masters" Internship Program

Start Date: 
June 12, 2017

Summer 2017 Deep-Dive Masters

Ashoka SFS Internship Program


The Opportunity

Ashoka Social Financial Services (SFS) believes that markets can be a powerful tool to improve the quality and character of people’s lives. For almost a decade, Ashoka SFS has searched for and identified leading social entrepreneurs with systems-changing new ideas that use the market to create social impact. A sub-set of these social entrepreneurs is showing us something new: we can achieve greater impact by shifting the market itself to align financial success with social impact. These innovations change what it takes to win, and have the potential to shape large-scale patterns of market activity to benefit everyone.

The Ashoka SFS team has embarked on a collaborative effort to understand and share with others what we believe is a new way of thinking about and designing how our markets work.

In Summer 2016, we launched the inaugural Ashoka SFS Summer associate internship program and welcomed the first cohort of “Deep-Dive Masters” associates. With this team of 6 outstanding associates, we investigated over 180 Ashoka Fellows to identify innovations that are changing the architecture of our markets. This work resulted in case studies that dive deep into 18 market-based innovations to show how they each create social impact in different areas of need – such as education, efficient energy markets, affordable housing, and financial inclusion. We are expanding this rigorous program to strengthen and maximize our team-of-teams at Ashoka SFS and reach higher levels of impact.

We are currently looking for innovative and dynamic entrepreneurial individuals to join our team as the next class of “Deep-Dive Masters” associates for 10 weeks in Summer 2017 (June 12 – August 18).

Key activities will include:

  • Investigating cutting-edge structural innovations and social entrepreneurs;
  • Identifying patterns to inform working hypotheses on trends and innovations driving social impact; and
  • Independent and team-oriented reflection on broader implications of research for improving the quality and character of people’s lives by changing how our markets work.

We expect successful candidates will take an active lead in developing and carrying out strategies for managing new information and insights; helping everyone to see the big picture and connect it with fine-grained details and analysis; encouraging Associates to lead and contribute during small-team discussions, team working sessions, and development of deliverables; and expressing passion for seeing the power of markets in creating social impact.

Why Ashoka Social Financial Services?

  • Work with a dynamic team that is passionate about unleashing the potential of markets to solve social problems.
  • Contribute to building an exciting new initiative for a leading global organization.
  • Help support world-renowned social entrepreneurs and learn from their work.
  • Gain concrete leadership experience while researching new and innovative ways to improve the quality and character of people’s lives through the market.

While positions are unpaid, this partnership offers a unique vantage point to combine learning from the most powerful social innovations around the world with cutting-edge thought leadership.

What qualities are we looking for in Deep-Dive Masters?

We look for the following in our Deep-Dive Masters:

  • Determination, ambition, and passion for changing the world by bringing together people and through rigorous approaches and big ideas;
  • Entrepreneurial character, intellectual and expansive curiosity, and capacity to move fluidly between rigorous research and quick turnaround-evaluations of innovations; and
  • Ability to analyze information at a conceptual and operational level, and creative in solving problems of large-scale.

Strong candidates will be excellent communicators, express self-awareness and strong empathy for others, and have strong ethical fiber.

What else do we look for?

While not required, we have found that people with the following succeed in this position:

  • Masters degree, Doctorate or other graduate-level experience;
  • Familiarity with qualitative analysis; and
  • Deep experience with at least one of the following: Public Policy; International Development; Diverse for-profit business models; Social Entrepreneurship, Social Impact, and/or Innovation; Economics, Sociology of Economics, Philosophy of Economics, and/or other discipline with an emphasis on economies; other related field.

We welcome all applicants, but will be looking for evidence of comfort/experience with conceptual work and detailed research for undergraduates.

How to Apply

Step 1 - Please send a Resume and Cover Letter to Jennifer Vogt, Innovation Manager at

Step 2 - Submit general information about yourself using this link

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. We urge students to apply as soon as possible given the high volume of applications received. Please note that only complete applications – Resume and Cover Letter – will be considered.

UPDATE: We are currently in ROUND 2 - deadline Monday, March 20th, 2017 - for receiving applications for these small team membership positions.