PopTech, the social innovation and thought leadership network, opened nominations Feb. 1 for the 2010 PopTech Social Innovation Fellows Program.

The program helps accelerate the impact of emerging change agents incubating transformative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing social, economic and environmental challenges. Fellows are exposed to the latest tools and thinking in technology, leadership, communications, branding, funding, design and scalability, and also gain access to a network of highly regarded thought leaders. Nominations may be submitted online at poptech.org/nominate.

The Social Innovation Fellows Program exemplifies PopTech’s commitment to the field of social innovation and highlights the importance of this sector in developing breakthrough solutions to some of the world’s most urgent challenges.

The centerpiece of the program is an intensive multi-day, interactive curriculum focused on areas critical to the success of “big bet” social innovations. This experience is complemented by participation in PopTech 2010, the annual meeting of prominent thought leaders, influencers and policy-makers on Oct. 20-23 in Camden.

“Immersion in the PopTech network provides our fellows with a unique opportunity to showcase their work and develop deep relationships with a corps of supporters who are committed to advancing their ideas, projects and collaborations,” said Leetha Filderman, director of PopTech Accelerator.

In 2009 PopTech received more than 200 nominations from over 30 countries for the Social Innovation Fellows Program. This year, nominations are particularly encouraged in the fields of health care, energy, water and the arts, as well as green materials, the environment and education. Fellows will be selected based on their proven track record and their potential to generate high-impact and sustainable solutions.

“We look for passionate, effective leaders with ground-breaking ideas and equip them with the knowledge, tools and connections needed to maximize their impact,” said Andrew Zolli, curator and executive director of the PopTech Institute.

Past PopTech Social Innovation Fellows have included Erik Hersman and Ory Okolloh of Ushahidi, Kushal Chakrabarti of Vittana Foundation, Emily Pilloton of Project H Design, Ken Banks of FrontlineSMS and Eben Bayer of Ecovative Design. Fellows have gone on to receive hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding, high-visibility media coverage, prestigious awards and other notable fellowships.