The 2015 empowering people award is open for entries from across the world, and African innovators are invited to submit their technologies.
The competition seeks to identify innovative technical solutions to tackle global challenges in basic needs.
Inventors and developer teams can submit their low-tech innovations in one of eight categories that cover the main areas of basic needs. The potential to be embedded in entrepreneurial models providing sustainable help to individuals and communities in developing regions is one of the pivotal criteria.
Effective, simple and innovative: the Award is on the lookout for solutions in the categories of:
The first prize winner will be awarded KES 5.5 million; the second prize is valued at KES 3.3 million; and third prize at KES 2.2 million. In addition, 20 runners-up will be awarded a sum of KES 550,000 each.
A Community Prize will also be awarded and judged by the highly engaged global online empowering people community. The winning entry here will receive hardware to the value of KES 330,000.
“There is a wealth of innovative skill in Kenya and around the world, and I am proud to be a juror for an Award that recognises and celebrates ordinary people who innovate for the good of their communities,” said Kenyan juror Duncan Onyango, the East Africa director for Acumen Fund.
“We look forward to submissions that show the creativity and ingenuity sparked by challenges in the developing world.”
Deadline for entries is November 30, 2015 at 07:00 am EAT.
Alongside the awarding of prize money, the solutions will be showcased and promoted in a Solutions Database and the inventors and entrepreneurs behind the innovations will become part of a broader endeavour: the “empowering people. Network”.
Previous winners showcasing their innovative technologies include solar kiosks to enable communities without electricity to charge mobile phones, One Dollar Glasses that are simple to construct locally, Georadar software that maps water tables in water scarce areas, SMSGYAN – an offline research database that gives users access to encyclopaedia via SMS and the micro-intensive Fish Farm that fits in a single shipping container. More innovations can be viewed here.
This community, created and facilitated by Siemens Stiftung, consists of developers and social entrepreneurs from around the globe. Members of the Network benefit from training sessions on relevant topics for their businesses as well as expert support for their organisational or technical developments. Regular online and offline meetings enable the creation of synergy and cooperation between inventors and players of the ecosystem who span the globe.
Project entries will be assessed by an interdisciplinary and international jury with the winners receiving cash prizes and an expert evaluation of their entries.
Rolf Huber, Managing Director, Siemens Stiftung said:
“The goal of the contest is ultimately to empower people in developing regions to have access to basic services for their daily needs. We want to locate creative solutions and we are eager to work with innovative teams to bring their solutions to the lives of those who need them most.“
Since our first Award in 2012, we were able to support dozens of initiatives. In addition, our network partners of engineers from various fields and social business experts around the world help them maximise their impact.”
Further information on www.empowering-people-network.org