As a new era dawns with new leaders on the national stage, I doubt that I’m alone in feeling a renewed sense of hope and opportunity, not to mention a sense of duty as an ecosystem builder to work for positive impact in our society. This sentiment arises in large part due to the beautiful and inspiring words from Amanda Gormon’s inaugural poem, which says in part:

“When day comes we step out of the shade,
aflame and unafraid
The new dawn blooms as we free it
For there is always light,
if only we’re brave enough to see it
If only we’re brave enough to be it”

Startup Champions Network’s CEO Kristin Luetz wrote recently that “ecosystem builders are already well-positioned to have an outsized impact on civic engagement.” We ecosystem builders have an opportunity to step up and shine. Let us be brave enough to be the light that Amanda Gorman challenges us to be.

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The Mindset, Traits, and Skills of an Ecosystem Builder
If you talk to enough ecosystem builders you’ll get a sense of the mindset, traits, and skills that are critical to doing the work successfully. Really impactful ecosystem builders have a different approach, a mindset that sets them apart. These traits enable them to make a positive social impact. I solicited insights from ecosystem builders, asking their thoughts on the most critical skills, traits, or mindset for an ecosystem builder.

Find out what they had to say


Ecosystem Building and Civic Commitment
Startup Champions Network’s Kristin Buth Leutz is calling ecosystem builders to use their skills in community building and dialog to build a more prosperous and peaceful future for all.

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In the Next COVID-19 Bill, Target Innovation and Entrepreneurship
John Dearie and Rustin Finkler argue that a fourth legislative package is needed to complete America’s economic comeback. And, this time, the legislation should focus on accelerating the economy’s growth and job creation potential by strengthening the nation’s commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship.

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Live the Values
Anika Horn has been exploring the Kauffman Foundation’s Seven design principles for building entrepreneurial ecosystems, through a series of fireside chats with ecosystem builders. In this latest installment, they explore principle #4, Live the Values

Read part 2


City Innovation Ecosystems
In partnership with and support from Schmidt Futures and Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the City Innovation Ecosystems program asks city leaders to commit to creating the right policies, program, and practices to ensure their communities can thrive in the global, innovation-driven economy.

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International Economic Development Council Entrepreneurship-led Economic Development Certification
Developed with support from the Kauffman Foundation and the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) and in partnership with SourceLink, two new courses are being added to IEDC’s professional development line-up. They are designed for professionals who work with entrepreneurs and small businesses as well as those that support them via programs, networks and approaches that foster small business and entrepreneurial growth.

Read more



Impact Solopreneurs
Calling all self-employed ecosystem builders! Anika Horn is hosting a global meetup for solopreneurs with a heart for social change.
Date: Jan 26, 11 a.m. EST

Learn more & register


InBIA’s Advance Leadership Summit
Get insights on how communities can foster innovation-driven startup activity and what the future might hold for entrepreneurship, investment, and economic recovery. Featuring a fireside chat with author Brad Feld.
Date: January 27, 2021

Learn more & register


Social Venturers Masterclass: Rooted in Purpose
Never get stomped on again. Uncover what drives you and lead with your values.
Date: February 5, 2021, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. EST

Learn more & register

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