The Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at MIT has launched the Foundry Fellowship, a first-of-its-kind leadership program for accomplished entrepreneurs who are considering their role in shaping the future of the African innovation ecosystems in which they work and live.

Fellows will receive instruction from MIT faculty, connect with investors, and expand their network of peer innovators. The Fellowship is open to entrepreneurs working and living in Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal, and Uganda.

Building on the MIT ethos of Mens et Manus (Mind and Hand), the Foundry describes itself as a place where “entrepreneurs come together to reflect on their achievements and shape their futures as leaders in business, investing, and governance.” The program includes an interactive online curriculum followed by a three-week immersive session that brings the cohort together to explore innovation-driven ecosystems.

The Foundry Fellowship presents an opportunity to bring MIT resources and knowledge to these critical innovation ecosystems and, importantly, also offers MIT an opportunity to learn from successful leaders and their innovative solutions.

Professor Fiona Murray, Faculty Director of the Legatum Center, described this opportunity to expand MIT’s innovation network as a moment for the Fellows to reflect on their entrepreneurial journey while also allowing her and her colleagues to learn from their unique experiences.

The Mastercard Foundation is also a partner in the fellowship. The collaboration is expected to deepen the impact of leaders who are solving complex problems, creating jobs, and bringing essential services to millions through innovation-driven business models.

The partners affirm that Africa’s entrepreneurs are building businesses that offer lessons in inclusion, sustainability, and value creation that extend far beyond the continent.

The Legatum Center will accept nominations from May 3 – May 20, 2021. A nomination is not required to apply; entrepreneurs are invited to submit an application directly.

All nominees and applicants must submit a completed application by 06:59 AM EAT on June 11th to be considered for the program. Nomination and application information is available at An initial cohort of 15 Fellows will be selected.

Legatum Foundation MIT

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