stage 1
16:45 - 17:15
Reframing the chaos: creating a social innovation ecosystem within Venezuela’s unrest

Short thesis

How do you host a community for entrepreneurial impact when the larger society is under unrest?


Venezuela is experiencing a political, economic and social crisis that has lead to a society upheaval. Protests on the streets lead by students started on February 2nd, 2014 and has not stopped until now. Venezuelans protest for the level on insecurity that took 25,000 lives on 2013, we are experiencing 60% of inflation, scarcity of food, lack of access to medicines and health, media censorship (we only have access to social media), among many others factors that show a clear lack of democracy and violations of human rights. Repression by the government police and National Guard has been brutal. More than 2,300 students have been arrested illegally and 98 still in jail, more than 500 have been tortured (electricity, gasoline, beaten and raped), and until now 40 have been shot and killed.

Under these circumstances we had the challenge of opening and launching our Impact Hub Caracas, a space and unique social innovation ecosystem that is aimed to host and provide services to a community of entrepreneurs that want to make a positive impact in our society and in the world.

I will share what is happening in Venezuela, what has been the role of social media, how civil society has reacted within this chaos and how we have reframed our activities and focus at the Impact Hub Caracas to adjust to such a turbulent environment and to help our entrepreneurs to generate the impact our society is needing under this difficult times.