TED Fellows Program

Every year, the TED Fellows program nurtures the vision and passion of 40 thought leaders and trailblazers, giving momentum to their ideas. With a global network of over 300 Fellows strong, the TED Fellows program is a hub for cross-disciplinary collaboration, connection and innovation.

The history

At TEDGlobal 2007 in Arusha, Tanzania, 100 Fellows from across Africa joined a first-of-its-kind gathering that brought together the "Cheetah" generation. TED speaker George Ayittey coined this nickname to describe a generation of young people from across Africa who were entrepreneurial, fluent in technology and "ran like the wind." In Arusha, many new friendships, collaborations, companies, investments, websites and NGOs were born.

After the spectacular success of the first group of Fellows, we created a permanent platform — the TED Fellows program — to feed the passion of other amazing paradigm-shifters and foster the collaborative spirit.

Hear about the impact of the program from the Fellows themselves...

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How the TED Fellowship Program works

Every year, we invite forty people from around the world to participate in either the TED or TEDGlobal Conference and partake in a unique experience that grows their potential. We select TED Fellows across all disciplines based on the strength of their achievements, their potential for impact, and their character.

The TED Fellowship offers access to an exclusive private network of change-makers, unique skills-building workshops and the mentorship of world-renowned experts. TED Fellows also present their very own TED Talks at the conferences - an unprecedented opportunity to spread their great ideas. After the conference, TED Fellows remain connected to the myriad resources of the TED community.

Once the TED Fellowship year has passed, we choose 10 from the pool of existing Fellows for the two-year TED Senior Fellows program, bringing them to four additional conferences (for a total of 5).

The results

As a result of the program, TED Fellows have received millions of dollars in funding. Many have been awarded prestigious prizes and have signed with speaking agents and garnered book contracts. TED Fellows experience increased clarity of mission, improved self-esteem and renewed senses of personal sustainability. Most significantly, Fellows have developed major collaborations with each other and remain a part of the close-knit TED Fellows community.


Recent Talks by TED Fellows