New Ashoka Fellows for Social Entrepreneurs in Journalism

Teaming up with the Knight Foundation, Ashoka announced that they will award fellowships to 30 social entrepreneurs over the next three years aimed at changing the way journalism works throughout the world.

These Fellows will receive three-year stipends allowing them to focus full-time on their efforts to provide lasting, visible, systemic change in the way journalism works or the way society sees journalism. They will start new journalism organizations, create new kinds of news outlets, develop new models for investigative reporting, and campaign for public understanding of freedom of expression – launching projects designed to be expanded and copied. They also will become lifelong members of the Ashoka community, sharing and learning with more than 2,000 Ashoka Fellows working around the world in the fields of learning/youth development, the environment, health, human rights, economic development and civic engagement.

Ashoka wants to select at least 5 fellows by August 31st, 2008. They will expand to at least 10 fellows in 2009 and 15 in 2010. Go to their website to learn more.


A new Bangalore startup, DhanaX aims to be the primary lending platform for low-income borrowers. While at first glance it may look simply like a knockoff, with 70% of India still living in the rural areas and current access to such microfinance platforms still limited, another player in this field may not be that bad. writes:

Here is how it works:

  • dhanaX identifies and partners with recognized microfinance organizations, NGOs and credit societies that look into the economic needs of the poor.
  • As a lender, you can extend credit at a mutually agreed rate of interest to a suitable enterprise or individual through dhanaX.
    At the end of the stipulated loan period, dhanaX will facilitate the repayment of principal amount with interest with the help of partner organizations.

dhanaX’s core USP lies in it’s attempt to eliminate the intermediaries and be the platform to bring lenders and borrowers together.