The Dela Summit supports leading social entrepreneurs strengthen their strategies for scaling impact by connecting them with executives, entrepreneurs and experts (Strategy Thought Partners).
The Summit builds trusting relationships among the participants and equips the social entrepreneurs with tools to succeed in implementing their strategies.
In this four-day experience, participants focus on refining and strengthening strategies, making connections and exploring systems leadership in a peer format.
All Dela Summit Participants: Social Entrepreneurs, Team members, Strategy Thought Partners & Guests
The first day of the Summit will offer an opportunity for social entrepreneurs to present their system change strategies.
This is a key step, as it is the first moment participants will communicate the strategies that they have developed throughout the Accelerator to an outside audience and generate excitement for the conversations they will have the following day. You can meet this year's participating social entrepreneurs below.
Social Entrepreneurs, team members & STPs
During the second and third day of the Summit, the social entrepreneurs will have a series of one-on-one or one-on-two conversations with Strategy Partners, who will dive into their strategies and provide new insights to strengthen them.
These conversations also serve to help the social entrepreneurs identify blind spots, communicate their strategies more effectively and walk away with potential new contacts to help implement their plans. You can meet this year's Strategy Partners below.
Social Entrepreneurs and their team members
The final day slows down the pace of the intense and input-filled previous days.
We bring just the social entrepreneurs in a quieter, calmer setting and create an environment for them to reflect on their personal roles as systems change leaders.
In Coaching Circles, they will have the opportunity to explore their personal questions on leadership, collaboration, and challenges surrounding systems change.
Strategy Thought Partners
The following profiles are of Strategy Thought Partners who will work with the 11 participating social entrepreneurs in a series of in-depth conversations.
At the Summit, Strategy Partners work in a 1:1 and/or 1:2 session with each of the social entrepreneurs, focusing on:
Sharpening their strategies to shift systems and generate large scale impact;
Helping the social entrepreneurs work through specific challenges;
Brainstorming relevant networks and connections.
Unbound 2.0 | Last firm acquired | Ex-McKinsey | IIM Calcutta
Aakriti leads Unbound, a systems change advisory firm working on designing and enabling progress towards resilient economic, educational and healthcare models. Coming from a business school and a consulting background before her foray into development, she views innovation and the power of business as critical components of lasting change in the modern world.
Aakriti Gupta is also a systems educator, delivering workshops & courses on Systems Thinking and System Dynamics at various universities around the world.
Associate Director, Forum for the Future, India
Anna Biswas is the Associate Director in India for the international sustainability non-profit Forum for the Future. She has over 15 years experience working with corporates, governments, civil society and philanthropy to catalyse systems change.
Anna has experience in strategy setting, applying Futures & Foresight techniques, using systems change practice and frameworks for diagnosis and intervention design & planning, building collaborations and capacity, and is constantly in awe of the amazing changemakers she gets to work with.
Åsa Skogström Feldt
Managing director of IKEA Social Entrepreneurship BV.
IKEA Social Entrepreneurship supports social entrepreneurs all over the world, to create greater opportunities for vulnerable people and communities, through impact investments, partnerships and development programs.
Åsa Skogström Feldt has a combination of business and NGO background, now focusing on the intersection between philanthropy and business development to contribute to solutions to the big challenges of our time.
Global Business Area Manager - IKEA Home smart
With a background in industrial and after ten years in the kitchen industry, Björn Block joined IKEA in 2012 and got the opportunity to lead the new initiative called IKEA Home smart, IKEA’s take on Internet of Things:
Today we are a Business Area and have proudly developed and launched products within smart lighting, smart sound and smart windows together with other HFBs. All connected to the IKEA Home smart eco system and app.
Christina Niemelä Ström
IKEA Supply Sustainability manager
Christina Niemelä is an internationally experienced business leader with passion for development of both business and people with deep understanding of the total IKEA value chain, since over 20 years.
Christina has been in various senior leadership roles within IKEA Supply, IKEA Range and IKEA Franchise.
Social entrepreneur & mentor
Chris Underhill MBE works as a mentor and is a social entrepreneur in the field of quality of life, and mental health in the community. Chris has developed a number of social enterprises, for example Thrive, an organisation working in gardening, disability and community and ADD International, working in the developing world with disabled people creating systems of representation, advocacy and policy development. He has built several organisations in the field of global mental health, for example BasicNeeds, which promotes the Model for Mental Health and Development created by Chris in 2000. Chris is also the co-founder of a new organisation benefiting social entrepreneurs: The Elders Council for Social Entrepreneurs, and has recently been appointed Chair of the Catalyst-2030 Mental Health Collaboration.
Chris is a Skoll Foundation awardee in Social Entrepreneurship, an awardee in Social Entrepreneurship of the Schwab Foundation, and a Senior Fellow of Ashoka, and has been honoured with an MBE by HRH the Queen for his work in disability.
David de Prado
Global Design Manager at IKEA - Food and Financial Services
David Prado has a long career in human-centered Design with a remarkable experience in detecting opportunities and defining products and services that make a difference.
David is convinced in the power of human creativity to tackle the big meaningful challenges our humanity has.
Chief Operating Officer at Stage Six
As chief operating officer at Stage Six, Eric Oetjen is responsible for the global operations of the company. He also serves as a senior business advisor to its clients and strategic partners. He brings more than 30 years of experience to the Stage Six team. His experience and leadership have been focused on developing and delivering innovative business solutions, providing outstanding client service, and driving sustainable revenue growth and mission impact.
Prior to joining the Stage Six team in 2020, Eric served as the CEO of Northern Lights Solutions providing strategy and business advisory services to social enterprises and worked for over 20 years as Senior Vice President for ICF, a recognized management and technology consulting services company, leading a $125M, 700+ person consulting practice focused on the fields of community development, education, social policy, and workforce development.
Sustainability manager IKEA Franchisor Global Expansion
Heléne Davidsson is a curious, down to earth sustainability manager with experience from throughout global IKEA value-chain within development, compliance and integration of sustainability in the business.
Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Manager at Inter IKEA
- Several years of experience from different part of IKEA, many different assignments and leadership roles such as Communication and Sustainability Manager at IKEA Retail Sweden, Communication Manager and Process Owner for Make IKEA a Great Workplace at Ingka Group and Inter IKEA Group Communication Manager.
- Currently, inspired, and humble taking on a new assignment to lead Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion agenda for Inter IKEA:
"We have taken some important steps forward as an inclusive brand, both as an employer and through our offer. Still, we are just in the beginning. We have a strong vision to create better every-day for the many people on our culture and values make us unique. We will build on our strength and take next step to create long-lasting movements across all IKEA businesses and beyond our own operations”
Director of BM2C – Business Management Consulting
Jefferson Mendes is the Director of BM2C – Business Management Consulting. Acting as a senior consultant, he has a wealth of experience within the forest management sector, advising national and international companies on strategy, market positioning, business planning and development, M&A, timberland appraisals, and operational excellence.
Jefferson started his career in 1982, working for Brazilian forest-based companies. In 1989, he founded Silviconsult, responding for its management until 2010. From 2010 to 2013 was the partner and director of Pöyry Silviconsult. From 2014 to March 2017, Jefferson was Head of Pöyry Management Consulting in Latin America. He also worked as a University professor at PUC (Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná) and UP (University Positivo).
Jefferson holds a BSc. in forestry (UFPR), an MSc. in forest management (UFPR), a post-graduate degree in economics and agricultural politics (SEAB), an MBA in business management (FGV), and executive education in leadership (INSEAD).
Principal director at Accenture, Stockholm
Jennie Perzon is a principal director in Accenture’s strategy practice in Stockholm where she leads innovation and thought leadership.
With 25 years of industry experience and a recent PhD in ecosystems and broader values, Jennie is passionate about sustainable development through innovation and collaboration.
Strategic Communications Manager
Jessica has been working at the frontiers of positive change as a narrative strategist, network leader, curriculum designer, and facilitator for over a decade. She brings experience as a community manager with the RE-AMP Network, a faculty lecturer at the Blekinge Institute of Technology in graduate-level courses focused on systems and complexity theory and leadership, a learning facilitator for the School of Systems Change, and most recently a program manager with the Garfield Foundation.
Jessica is driven to support people in building adaptive leadership skills and collaborative capacities to advance transformative social change.
CEO of Stage Six
Julie McBride has more than 20 years of experience addressing challenges to scaling social impact. In her most recent venture as CEO of Stage Six, Julie manages a team of highly experienced consultants with a wide range of direct experience in scaling enterprises, to help social enterprises and funders develop and execute sustainable scaling strategies.
Her experience includes healthcare, housing, early childhood development, and WASH in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. She specializes in applying the principles of franchising to expand suitable social enterprises to multiple countries.
Kaat Van Bosstraeten
Senior Programme Coordinator at King Baudouin Foundation
After 10 years of working in communication in different financial companies, Kaat was looking for a job with more direct social impact. She first worked on poverty and migration for Sensoa, a non-profit organisation and a local government (city of Antwerp).
Since 2020, Kaat has been programme coordinator for poverty and social justice at the Belgian King Baudouin Foundation.
Chief Sustainability Officer, Inter IKEA Group
As Chief Sustainability Officer at Inter IKEA Group - covering the IKEA product and food range, supply, production and franchising:
Lena leads the global IKEA sustainability strategy which includes transforming IKEA into a circular business, becoming climate positive, creating a fair and equal society and enabling healthy and sustainable living.
Psychology, Systems Analyst
Leonardo's academic background includes studies of Systems Analysis, Psychology, Philosophy and Business. He has been an entrepreneur for more than 40 years, developing projects in different industries and countries.
I’m passionate about life, people and nature. I believe in human values, in the look from a child's eyes, in people’s soul, in the honesty of nature, in creating value, in discovering new paths, in growing and seeking personal, group and social fulfilment.
Leonardo wrote a book ViWiSpi, Vision with Wisdom and Spirit, where he explored how to help organisations achieve their full development.
Housing consultant, writer and editor
Mr. McAllister is a consultant, writer, editor and a recognized expert in inclusive housing and finance with over 20 years’ experience working in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. He is a Senior Advisor at Habitat for Humanity’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter and his consulting assignments include the World Bank, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Citi Foundation among others. He speaks English and French and holds Irish and US citizenship.
Mr. McAllister is a graduate of the International Housing Finance Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and holds a master’s degree in Development Studies from University College, Dublin and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Wisconsin.
Sustainability manager in Purchasing development at IKEA of Sweden
Nadiya Andersson works as Sustainability manager in Purchasing development in IKEA of Sweden. In her previous role, she worked as Category manager responsible for pigment on board category (lacquered furniture). Nadiya also worked for synthetic textiles. She shares:
"I believe that doing sustainable business is a MUST already today and for the future.", Nadiya Andersson
Director at Centre for Responsible Business
Centre for Responsible Business (CRB) is a centre of excellence, facilitating organisational behaviour change towards incorporating responsible business strategies, policies and practices that contribute to harmonious relationships in workplace, organisational productivity and growth.
"We support actors and stakeholders across the value chain - national and transnational brands and buyers, local manufacturers and suppliers (SMEs), national and international organisations, civil society organisations and governments - as they move towards a more sustainable and responsible future."
CEO, TMF Group
Mark Weil is the CEO of TMF Group. Prior to joining TMF in 2018, Mark worked as a consultant for two decade in Europe, North America and Asia. He became a partner at Oliver Wyman, where he ran the global retail banking practice and latterly the EMEA region.
Following this, Mark Weil was appointed Marsh’s CEO, UK and Ireland. During his tenure, it became the largest insurance broker in the UK. He has led work on cyber risk for the UK government.
Managing Director for Inter IKEA Systems Service AB
Currently working as Managing Director for Inter IKEA Systems Service AB and Process Leader for how we set up Sell the offer within IKEA.
Pär Gustafsson has a background working with logistics and the commercial agenda on store at a national and global level.
Consultant Vancouver, BC
Mike Kang is a Consultant with Reos Partners, a global social enterprise that specializes in multi-stakeholder collaboration to solve our world's most important social problems. Mike brings a mix of technical, social, and organizational expertise to help bridge the gaps between different approaches to effecting change.
Through strategy design, writing, coaching, and facilitation, Mike builds teams that have the systemic leverage to achieve transformative outcomes.
Director of the Forced Labor & Human Trafficking team at Humanity United
As the Director of the Forced Labor & Human Trafficking team at Humanity United, Vijay Simhan manages work that touches on issues of worker agency, safer labor migration, and corporate accountability:
This includes initiatives addressing the well being of workers traveling from South Asia to the Gulf, forced labor in the brick sector in Nepal, and labor and sex trafficking in the United States.
Each social entrepreneur has been chosen based on their solutions to improve livelihoods for vulnerable and marginalized people, with a special focus on economic empowerment.
The social entrepreneurs and their organizations are at an inflection point where working in on their systems change strategies to scale their impact is a priority, and the Dela Accelerator is a valuable process in their journeys.
Ahsan Rony is an environmental activist, Ashoka Fellow and the founder of Green Savers, an organization that works on urban agriculture and Environment. He is a Global Shaper of World Economic Forum. He is also an International exchange Alumni under IVLP of U.S. Department of State and also an Alumni of U.S. Forest Service Urban Seminar 2018.
He founded the Organization Green Savers Association in 2010 with an effort to increase awareness and the number of trees in Dhaka city and across the country. He planted trees on more than 5500 rooftops in the city and established 400 Green Club and Oxygen Banks in educational institutions all over the country. Green Savers is also operating a Tree Hospital and a Mobile Plants Clinic in collaboration with Dhaka North City Corporation in Dhaka city, playing Secretariat role of Planned Urban Greening Strategy for Dhaka North City Corporation in Dhaka city.
Ahsan has received the Prime Minister’s Award for contributing to the environment in 2013, Joy Bangla Youth Award in 2015 and Che Guevara Youth Award in 2016, Channel I nature Care Award 2016 DYDF youth Award 2018, U.S Forest Service recognition in 2018, Urban Resilience Award in 2019 and Ashoka Fellowship 2019 with repeated appearances as a Green Ambassador all across the media.
Read more about Ahsan Rony and his work here.
B.S. Nagesh, founder of Trust for Retailers and Retail Associates of India, is building Pride and Respect for front-end employees, fostering inclusion in the retail industry by providing livelihoods to Persons With Disabilities (PwD’s).
Trust for Retailers and Retail Associates of India (TRRAIN) under its project PANKH Wings of destiny works towards creating livelihood for PwD’s. The organization has trained more than 22000 PwD’s in the last 10 years, equipping individuals with skills that led to over 72% of them securing jobs and lifting their families out of poverty. Many of them were able to send their siblings to school, pay their parents’ outstanding loans or help support their sisters’ marriages. The study also shows 22% of the PwD’s were able to put roofs on their houses, which previously had temporary or thatched roofs.
By joining the Dela programme, B.S. Nagesh and his team at TRRAIN are already seeing a shift in their thinking as well as a possible way forward: "Thought partners and the Dela team have not only questioned out assumptions but also suggested new ways of viewing systems change and thus creating a new way of thinking and working."
Read more about B.S. Nagesh here.
Dominika is radically limiting the volume of trash accumulating in landfills by introducing a new role to the system: trash brokers. Nearly 400,000 people have joined the movement that began with the idea of redefining the status and redistribution of unwanted objects, which is now creating a new culture around consumption.
Currently, Dominika and her team of 160 volunteers help people save their unwanted items from dumpsters by providing tools to connect them with people who will use those items. Uwaga śmieciarka jedzie's method helps decrease the number of trash on landfills.
Read more about Dominika Szaciłło here.
Francesco Piazzesi grew up in Mexico passionate about building communities for families who do not have opportunities to access adequate housing. In 1987, Francesco founded Adobe Home Aid, a non-profit organization that teaches communities how to make green building materials. In 1997, the NGO was joined by a social enterprise called Echale a Tu Casa. Drawing on years of experience in the housing industry, Francesco and his team are tackling the lack of adequate housing for Mexicans at the base of the pyramid. This self-build model focuses on community financing and the construction of safe, environmentally friendly and adequate homes, in order to offer both dignity and heritage value for homeowners.
ÉCHALE has received national and international recognitions including Katerva, World Housing Award, Clinton Global Initiative, Schwab Foundation, National Quality Award, National Housing Award 2007 and 2018, World Entrepreneurship Forum, Best for the World from B Corp. Francesco is Ashoka member since 2010.
Read more about Francesco Piazzesi and his work here.
Hugo Menino Aguiar (he/him) is co-founder and CEO of SPEAK. Hugo took a BSc and MSc in Computer Science Engineering. He was a Software Engineer at OutSystems and a Product Manager at Google, where he was awarded a Google Golden Award, due to his efficiency and productivity. As a result of his work with SPEAK, Hugo became a Global Shaper at the World Economic Forum and was selected as an Ashoka Fellow.
One of SPEAK's participants, stranded in Malaysia and not able to return home (no flights), found Speak when surfing the net, decided to enroll: "At the end of the session they don't say good-bye, they usually say "Danke" (thank you) which I find rather moving. Thanks for letting me participate." Isabel, buddy of a German language group.
Read more about Hugo Menino Aguiar and his work here.
María Almazán, CEO of Smart Green Industry, designed a methodology for transforming conventional textile workshops into sustainable workshops that are used globally in sustainable change strategies. Through these workshops, the steps that are needed to fundamentally transform the industry towards a fair future become clear.
Thus, the think-tank aims to foster a movement against fast fashion as a global environmental and social issue. With a change in the textile value chain, Smart Green Industry wants to move away from fast fashion and see an increase in the number of conscious buyers.
Read more about María Almazán and her work here.
Melissa Malzkuhn is an activist, academic, artist, and digital strategist with a love for language play, interactive experiences, and community-based change. She founded and leads creative research and development at Motion Light Lab, at a Gallaudet University research center.
Melissa is a co-founder of CREST Network, focusing on equity and inclusion of deaf people in sign language technology. Her production company Ink & Salt developed an app to teach American Sign Language, The ASL App, which has been downloaded over 2 million times. Third-generation Deaf, she has organized deaf youth and worked with international deaf youth programs, fostering leadership and self-representation. Now, she collaborates with teams in different countries to support literacy development for deaf children through sign language resources. She is an Obama Fellow, inaugural class 2018, and has been recognized as a leading social entrepreneur by Ashoka, in 2020.
Read more about Melissa Malzkuhn and her work here.
Nicola is the Co-founder of the Social Gastronomy Movement (SGM), a global network of interconnected local communities that use the power of food as a tool for social change. The Social Gastronomy Movement cultivates connections, collaborations and partnerships that strengthen our individual and collective capacity to co-create an equitable future, inclusive society and healthy planet. SGM advocates for positive changes in local food systems so that together we move towards global progress creating a new ecosystem for change.
She sits on the board of several social organizations such as Catalyst2030 and IFFS, while actively coaching young women and social entrepreneurs around the world. Her passion lies at the cross road of grass root activism and policy making towards systems change, especially in fields of food and education, at the intersection with technology and innovation. Gryczka has become a motivational speaker and consultant at renowned organizations and events such as IADB, FAO, WFP, WEF and SxSW among others.
Said Hammouche created Mozaïk RH which is today a major actor of the economic inclusion of graduates from less privileged backgrounds. In 13 years, Said has forged strong ties with large companies and is now a reference in Diversity and Equal Opportunities expertise.
We train young jobseekers who have difficulties to find a job/apprenticeship/internship. Their difficulties are multiple: lack of network, self-censorship, lack of knowledge of the labor market, wrong job research strategy.
We bring our HR expertise to implement inclusive practices : we start from the recruitment needs of companies
We publicly advocate that diversity is linked with economic performance and social cohesion
Read more about Said Hammouche and his work here.
Sazzad Hossain is a social entrepreneur who believes in the power of technology and human connection to accelerate social impact. Having similar experience in my earlier childhood of language barrier, He is especially passionate about promoting access to opportunities for the migrants and refugees through skills development opportunities. He is one of the youngest Ashoka Fellow and has recently been awarded the Forbes 30 Under 30.
Sazzad believes in empowering people with the right skill set to solve their own problems instead of merely providing a crutch that only solves the issues in the short run: "Empowering them with communication skills not only helps to prevent exploitation or navigate day-to-day situations, but also builds bridges with the locals. We are fortunate, that the spillover effect of our approach has also brought massive social equality."
Read more about Sazzad Hossain and his work here.
Silvia R. Ziller is a Forest Engineer with a strong drive for environmental conservation since her early years living in a small town in southern Brazil. After working on vegetation surveys, environmental assessments and planning in different regions in Brazil, a biological invasion by pines used in forestry in a grassland ecosystem caught her attention back in 1996. She realized it could become a serious problem for the landscape, water resources, and native plants and animals. So, she enrolled for a Doctorate course at the local University.
The Horus Institute was established in 15 March, 2002, about at the same time Silvia was elected as Ashoka fellow. She became involved with work throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, worked with international NGOs and with global initiatives in Africa and the United States that aimed to advance the issue of invasive species. The Horus Institute has a network of contributors throughout Brazil, mainly for data and technical support to maintain and update the national database. It has become a national reference on the issue. It is a small organization with active board members who are committed to environmental conservation.
Read more about Silvia R. Ziller and her work here.