William Muir

Ashoka Fellow
Fellow Since 2015


This profile was prepared when William Muir was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2015.
The New Idea
Will is changing the way the community perceives gender by working on the mind-set, and attitude of adolescent boys towards women and then enabling them to become agents of change. Acting as role models in their communities, the young boys positively influence the thoughts of the other children in the wider community who have hitherto not been witness to a behaviour alternative for males other than that of a perpetrator or bystander to discrimination against women.

The crux of Will’s success lies in his curriculum - a combination of engagement hooks such as role plays, sustained discussions and debates, and action based events in the community. This curriculum includes a process of self-reflection and takes the boys through a journey of learning, leading them to see perceptions and issues of gender more sensitively, and to take some action-steps towards betterment in their communities. Once the boys complete the designed curriculum, Will makes them ambassadors of gender equity in their communities, wherein they spread their learning through a variety of platforms, from street theatre to survey-based research studies.

Will is breaking down the edifice of gender discrimination with a deep commitment to producing wide-spread behaviour change. He aims to use his work with communities in Pune as a model to convince other organizations and policy makers to include men and boys as part of their gender equity agenda.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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