Jorge Mori

Ashoka Fellow
Peru
Fellow Since 2007

Citation

This profile was prepared when Jorge Mori was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2007.
The New Idea
Jorge is creating a new institutional base from which university students can engage with government and the issue of transparency in governance, with institutions, and with each other in all twenty-five regions of Peru. Through a national network of university watchdog groups, he is paving the way for public university students to reach their untapped potential as one of Peru’s most important resources for development. Student watchdog groups monitor the performance of both university administrations and local governments using Peru’s new transparency laws to generate constructive debate. It is a mechanism for creating islands of competence for students to voice concern about the way the universities are run and about conditions outside the university. In the process, students transform the way public universities are viewed in society, positioning public universities (and their students) as political thought leaders, and learning invaluable job skills. They also build networks and contacts to institutions outside the university that will enable them to find jobs and become committed citizens in their professional lives.
In a fragmented Peruvian society, Jorge uses his ability and zeal to create bridges for university students in civil society. He forges new relationships between university students and their communities and local governments, between public and private university students, and between universities and the private sector at a time when the private sector is interested to collaborate with universities.
Jorge is piloting a model in the University of San Marcos in Lima, Peru’s largest public university, which he will replicate in all thirty-five public universities in Peru. This begins with a selection process to identify students who share the vision of the “Observatorio Universitario.” Using connections to each other through the Internet and to professionals, students build competence in three areas: The informed analysis of the use of public resources; the creation of networks that have previously been reserved for students from private universities; and, the construction of a new public university institution.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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