Summer 2018 Deep-Dive Masters Associate

Ashoka: Innovators for the Public
Arlington, VA
Job Type
Deadline for Applications
Where to Apply

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 is building momentum through 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.

We are now looking for the next class of “Deep-Dive Masters” Associates! This creative and forward-thinking group of leading changemakers will join us for 10 weeks in Summer 2018 (June 11 – August 17).

Location: Ashoka Global Offices, Arlington, VA, USA

What you’ll do
As a “Deep-Dive Masters” Associate, you will work with the Ashoka SFS team to dive deep into the work of the world’s most powerful innovations using markets for social impact.

Key activities include:
•       Investigating cutting-edge structural innovations and systems-changing 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.

In addition to identifying key insights and patterns looking across these innovations, you will have an opportunity to directly contribute to our program strategy for framework change. A sample of past projects include pitch decks for potential partners as well as program planning and development.

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

What you’ll contribute to building
In Summer 2016, we launched the inaugural Ashoka SFS Summer Associate internship program and welcomed the first cohort of Deep-Dive 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 expanded this effort in Summer 2017 to strengthen and maximize our team-of-teams at Ashoka SFS. We welcomed 12 new “Deep-Dive Masters” Associates, engaging with 3 of them to take on team lead roles and facilitate 3 small teams of 4 members.

Over the course of the summer, we investigated over 500 Ashoka Fellows to identify innovations changing market structures across sectors. As a result of this work, we identified 39 market-based structural and many more with high potential for similar change in the future.

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 and capacity to mobilize people, ideas, and resources to achieve strategic goals for a shared vision; 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 pursuing a Masters degree, Doctorate or other graduate-level experience succeed in this position. (You don’t need to have a solid background in finance or economics!) We welcome all applicants, but will be looking for evidence of comfort with conceptual thinking and organized research experience for undergraduates.

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.

How to Apply
Please send a Resume and Cover Letter to Jennifer Vogt, Innovation Manager at In addition to a cover letter and resume, 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.

We are currently accepting Round 1 applications for review for the summer positions with Ashoka Social Financial Services.

Application Deadline    February 2nd

Please note that each \”round\” represents a distinct period in which students may apply, not a succession of steps for your application. Students may apply in one round only.

About Ashoka
Founded in 1980, Ashoka is the world’s working community of more than 2,000 leading social entrepreneurs. It champions the most important new social change ideas and supports the entrepreneurs behind them by helping them get started, grow, succeed, and collaborate. As Ashoka expands its capability to integrate and connect entrepreneurs around the world, it builds an entrepreneurial infrastructure that is supporting the fast-growing needs of the citizen sector.  Ashoka’s vision is to create change today, for an Everyone A Changemaker™ society to become the reality of tomorrow.  For more information, visit

Additional Information

Note that while this work is unpaid, we have designed it to be an intensive educational program in innovation and knowledge management.