What Makes Us Unique

A local-to-global network of change makers for a sustainable future for all


Global Shapers are a diverse, action-oriented and passionate community. Over the past 10 years, the Global Shapers Community has engaged thousands of young people who have developed leadership skills and learned the importance of self-organizing for impact.

Understanding that systemic change requires a multistakeholder approach, Global Shapers have worked tirelessly to implement projects to improve their local communities while contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), otherwise known as the Global Goals, a world changing plan agreed by 193 countries to end poverty, fight inequality and tackle the climate crisis by 2030

These young people feel a sense of shared responsibility, an urgency to make the world a better place, and believe in cooperation and collaboration, irrespective of differences.

I see Global Shapers as custodians of the future, planting seeds today that will grow into results for tomorrow. Young people are bringing their voices to the table, intent on solution-building for a more sustainable and inclusive future. They are passionate advocates of the SDGs and their collective impact provides an unstoppable force for good.
Klaus Schwab Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum and Founder of the Global Shapers Community

29 June 2011

The Global Shapers Community is founded by Professor Klaus Schwab and the first 9 hubs are established around the world: Amsterdam, Geneva, Istanbul, Johannesburg, Lagos, London, New York, Riyadh, and Tokyo.


Diversity is a founding principle of the Global Shapers Community and every Hub strives to recruit members from all walks of life. Diversity brings benefits, such as having a breadth of perspectives and preventing echo chambers.

However, it also generates unique challenges, as it does not automatically lead to inclusion. Learning to collaborate with one another, despite differences, and building an atmosphere where everyone feels comfortable sets the foundations for a strong Hub culture.

As the Global Shapers Community grows, it will continue to champion diversity and inclusion with Hubs that are representative, of the better society that its members are seeking to build.

At the beginning of the Global Shapers Community, what it really meant to do was to recruit a diverse Hub that is full of individuals and ideas and ideologies that you may not actually like, and individuals who perhaps don't see eye to eye. Impact and shaping are determined by our ability to work across these different lived experiences and to bridge them to make an impact on our community.
Tariq Al-Olaimy Manama Hub


Community, with its sense of belonging, shared values and interests, is central to the Global Shapers’ experience. The three core ways in which members embody community are: care, purpose and action.

Community of care
Members go above and beyond the call of duty to support each other, building lifelong friendships that endure long after projects have finished. These strong personal connections build trust, enable collaboration and foster a culture of innovation.
Community of purpose
Five values bind the Global Shapers Community together, providing the principles to execute projects and initiatives: cooperation, passion, integrity, service and commitment. These values are put into practice daily and bring clarity to the behaviours Global Shapers should role-model.
Community of action
The Global Shapers Community consists of members who are self-organized, entrepreneurial and resolutely looking for ways to improve the world. Members have delivered thousands of projects over the past 10 years, highlighting the powerful impact that this community of action has had.
In addition to being a network to impact our community, the Global Shapers Community has been one of the most rewarding spaces I have been in, because we are not just people doing projects, I also found a family.
Siboney Robles Guadalajara Hub

Impact model

The Global Shapers Community maximizes impact through its powerful theory of change. Four elements reinforce one another at the local, regional, national and international levels:
Global Shapers
Each Global Shaper brings unique skills to their Hub, and the participation in the Community’s events and activities further develops and expands a Shaper’s skill set and allows them to meet their full potential.
Change cannot happen in silos, or rely on a single individual. The decentralized Hub model enables Global Shapers to self-organize, strengthening autonomy at a local level and allowing members to concentrate their engagement where they see the greatest need. Once founded, Hubs require direction, delegation and collaboration to flourish, incubate ideas and maintain momentum.
Local communities
Global Shapers improve the state of the world, one project at a time. Hubs are independent and best positioned to design and deliver at least one project a year that meets the needs of local communities, often in partnerships with local organizations.
Global network
Once Hubs have reached a certain stage of maturity, they collaborate with other Hubs from all over the world to scale up their ideas and solutions on pressing issues, such as climate change and unemployment. Regular events organized for and by Global Shapers enables knowledge sharing and collaboration.

Community reach