Celebrating Our Growing Community of Social Impact Professionals from Around the World

Alexandra Nemeth

Content Marketing Manager at MovingWorlds.org

It was just over nine years ago when Co-Founders Mark and Derk realized that they weren’t the only professionals out there hungry for meaning in their work, and that there was growing demand for purpose-driven businesses and employees. In partnership with founding members from around the world, the idea was born for a global movement of professionals supporting social good initiatives with their skills, while learning and growing as leaders in the process.

After years of piloting, the Experteering online platform was officially launched in 2014. Since then, nearly 1,000 projects have been completed in 99 different countries, unleashing over $17.5 million in professional skills to support the social entrepreneurship movement globally.

MovingWorlds team in Medellin
(Some) of the MovingWorlds team in Medellin, 2018

As the experteering movement grew, global corporations approached us to help them figure out how they could start scaling their own social impact programs. Partnering with world-class leadership development professionals, social entrepreneurs, educators, and corporate social responsibility leaders, we combined forces to build cross-sector shared-value programs like Microsoft’s MySkills4Afrika, Siemens empowering people.Network, Kering Solidarity Leave, and more.

We see increasingly independent and vocal employees expecting that companies walk their talk on sustainability, diversity, and inclusion. With MovingWorlds focusing on experiential learning and grassroots projects, we can show ‘normal’ people that they can be part of the solution. Participants create change, and in the process, are changed themselves, which you can learn more about in the many inspiring stories from our incredible alumni. 

By obsessively working to better support our members, we learned that while altruism was a motivation to engage in Experteering projects, people had another reason, too: achieving their own life goals of incorporating social impact into a purpose-driven career. This realization led to the development of the MovingWorlds Institute (MWI), which takes the best components from across all our programs – then adds in coaching, cohort-based learning, and premium support – to help professionals accelerate their social impact careers. 

MovingWorlds Institute Global Fellows at Lisbon kickoff
MovingWorlds Institute Global Fellows at the Lisbon kickoff, July 2019

While similar programs were first developed with corporate partners, our first open-to-the-world cohort kicked off in January 2017, and the Institute has continued to grow and improve ever since. Now at the end of 2019, our community of Global Fellows has grown to include over 100 social impact practitioners (120 come January)! This diverse and inspiring group of professionals are from over 28 countries, spanning every generation in the workforce, and representing every major industry and sector. Our Fellows have gone on to start their own social enterprises, become social intrapreneurs within corporations, launch careers in corporate social responsibility, join social good business (i.e. benefit corporations), and much, much more. Some have even helped us build new partnerships with companies who have collaborated with us to build programs only available to their own employees.

As 2019 comes to a close, we reflect with gratitude on this amazing community of Fellows from around the world who are committed to making an even bigger impact with their careers, and we look with excitement at the many opportunities ahead of us. 

Looking ahead, we believe that if we continue to invest in the grassroots and leaders behind world-changing ideas – at all levels and across all sectors – we’ll be able to accelerate our progress towards a more just and equitable planet. In 2020, we’ll be increasing our support of our community of Global Fellows by offering concrete tools that ultimately create connections, meaning, and community throughout the Fellowship and beyond, including:

  • Real-time events to share insights and best-practices in human-centered design, behavioral psychology, and social impact frameworks. One great example is our live “Design Challenge Sessions” where an alum works with our Director of the MovingWorlds Institute to create a design challenge and crowdsource creative solutions and feedback in real time with the MovingWorlds community.
  • Lessons from the field, which will give our Fellows a global stage to share amazing insights, lessons, and even failures. In 2020, we’ll start a TED-inspired virtual showcase where selected speakers will workshop their presentations and then present on a virtual stage. After, our content team will work with presenters to get their insights published.
  • Job opportunities shared across cohorts in our Professional Development channel 

If you’re already part of our Global Fellowship Alumni community and interested in participating in upcoming Design Challenge Sessions or Alumni Highlights, let us know here. If you’re a professional looking for more meaning in your work and to make more of an impact with your career, learn more about the benefits of a professional fellowship and apply to our next cohort! We’re looking forward to continuing this journey and supporting our incoming Global Fellows and Alumni for a lifetime of impact and community.