Young Innovators

Young Innovators creatively contribute to the renewal of their social, political and ecological worlds

Young Innovators is an extracurricular honours programme designed for curious and socially engaged students. You can follow this programme (15 EC) on top of any Master’s degree of the Utrecht University.

Showing up differently in a broken world

The Young Innovators programme is about making a change towards regenerativity. A regenerative society affirms life, and cares for the earth and its diverse communities. The programme brings together reflexive personal leadership with community-based changemaking. Working on a wide range of themes, the programme addresses the ways that we ‘show up in the world’ while working together with local communities. In doing so it confronts the deeper layers of the issues that trouble our world: underlying systems, paradigms of thought, and patterns of exclusion, extraction and exploitation. By combining our inner and outer world, and bringing together our head, heart, and hands, the Young Innovators programme seeks to contribute to a more regenerative world.


The programme offers practical workshops topics such as social innovations, reflexive learning, dialogue and change-making, and decolonisation. Young Innovators allows room for reflexive growth, with learning spaces to develop these skills and practices. The programme asks you to develop personal and community leadership. You will embark on an inspired journey for meaning and understanding amidst the complex challenges our societies face.

Creative and active-oriented research

The Young Innovators programme is based on creative and action-oriented research in diverse groups of international students. During the programme you will focus on who you are as a person, what drives you to enact social change, and how to initiate your own pathways for change-making. You will reflect on who we are as a community and how we can support each other. Lastly, Young Innovators works with outside communities on real issues to achieve change.

Collage of three images. First shows Young Innovators grouped together around a campfire. Second is a student mediating underneath a tree. The third shows a student interacting with a glass wall filled with colourful post-its.
Top Left: Image from Young Innovator Kick Off weekend. Top Right: Image showing one of the many grounding exercises explored at YIP - Bottom: Image showing student brainstorming during YIP session