IFC Sustainability Exchange Contest for Youth Innovations 2019

IFC Sustainability Exchange Contest for Youth Innovations 2019 (Fully-funded to Dakar, Senegal)
Are you an innovator between the ages of 18 and 35 who develops solutions to enhance your community, city, region, country? Are you committed to private sector improvements in transportation, mining, energy, or water? Apply for the IFC Sustainability Exchange Contest for Youth Innovations 2019.
This contest aims to inspire and facilitate dialogue on innovative ways to engage young people in infrastructure and natural resources, while addressing some of the problems and needs of communities and companies. They are calling young social entrepreneurs to submit a project proposal that contributes to some of the core themes of the 2019 IFC Sustainability Exchange: harnessing technology, inclusion, and benefit sharing across energy, transport, water, and mining.
The top three Applicants of the competition will have the opportunity to:

  • Present their ideas at an event during the IFC Sustainability Exchange in Dakar, Senegal.
  • IFC will cover travel expenses (economy flight and hotel accommodations) if traveling from outside of Dakar.
  • Benefit from unique capacity development and networking opportunities with experts from international development, academia, and the private sector. Potential one-on-one meetings with selected attendees.
  • IFC will feature and promote Finalists’ and Winners’ ideas on the commdev.org website and on IFC’s social media channels.

In the event the proposal involves more than one person, only the lead would receive support for travel or accommodation.

  • Innovators between the ages of 18-35 years (as of May 5, 2019) from around the world are invited to participate.
  • The competition is open to nationals of ALL countries. Participation is encouraged from eligible individuals with the drive to innovate, regardless of their occupation (e.g. students, NGO leaders, government officials, start-up creators, technical experts, or any other).
  • The applicant’s project proposal can be any new, original innovation, product, technology, or service, based on catalyzing growth through infrastructure, harnessing technology, inclusion and shared benefits (for private sector and communities).
  • Only one submission per contestant will be allowed. Subsequent submissions will be disqualified.

Evaluation Criteria

Submissions will be evaluated on how well the following four attributes are demonstrated

  • Significance: Proposed idea should be specific enough to reflect some level of depth related to the themes and significant enough to impact a large number of people and/or private sector companies or countries.
  • Originality and creativity: Submissions should present ideas that are either undeveloped or severely underdeveloped in international development research and literature, therefore showing originality and creativity.
  • Feasibility: Proposal should include a brief ‘roadmap to adoption’ on the feasibility of the solution and addresses any roadblocks; all submissions should be actionable and measurable; they should also be based on practicality rather than theory. Regional or country focus is encouraged.
  • Clarity: Proposal should be submitted in a clear and concise manner.

The application portal will ask for the following:

  • Title, name, age, and photo
  • Short abstract (200 word limit)
  • Explanation of problem and context (200 word limit)
  • Explanation of your solution (1000 word limit)
    (answers can be shared through 1000 word text response, short video or audio clip (3 minute limit), poster, charts, or well-captioned presentation

    • Why is it relevant and how will it bring social and/or environmental benefits to a community/country/region?
    • What is new about it?
    • By who, how, and when would it be implemented?
    • What is the expected impact?
    • Does it have strong potential to be replicated and scaled up?
    • What are challenges you might face and how will they be mitigated?

Click here to apply

Deadline: May 5, 2019

For more information, visit IFC Sustainability Exchange Contest.

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