The New School Changemaker Campus

Social Innovation at the New School

Forward-thinking educators founded The New School in 1919 to defy the intellectual constraints of traditional college education. As it approaches its centennial, The New School remains on the cutting edge-attracting active scholars, artists, and pacesetters who deploy creativity and innovation to challenge the status quo. Learn more about The New School’s vision here.

In New York City, Paris, and online, The New School enrolls 10,000 degree-seeking students in more than 130 undergraduate and graduate programs focused on collaborative, project-based, interdisciplinary learning. Education is driven by open discussion in small classes and a human-centered approach to problem solving, combining design thinking and social research to address the complex issues of our time.

At The New School, social innovation education is focused on enhancing the capacity of individuals, communities, and organizations to devise effective, just, and sustainable solutions to social and environmental challenges. 

Students collaborate with each other and with faculty and a range of external partners to design new forms of interaction, organizations, policies, technologies, and systems to improve lives and address pressing needs of the 21st century.

The New School’s unique approach to social innovation education leverages its strong capabilities in design, social sciences and the arts with a commitment to sustainability and social justice. It also emphasizes learning through action and many courses are structured as studios or practicum where students work together and with communities to make change happen.

Students can select from diverse interdisciplinary degree programs across the university to explore social innovation. In addition to a wide array of courses, the university offers unique educational contexts (labs, practicum, incubator, centers and research initiatives) through which students can engage in an exciting array of socially-engaged projects. Learn more about The New School’s divisions here.


Changemaker Campus

Launched in 2008, Ashoka offers the Changemaker Campus designation to leading institutions in social innovation education. These institutions share the vision for higher education to become the next global driver of social change by transforming the educational experience into a world-changing experience.