With just four weeks left until the culmination of the 2012 Dell Social Innovation Challenge, we have five fantastic finalists from around the world who surfaced from more than 1,500 entries in 90 countries. Entrepreneurship is in our DNA, and we are committed to fostering that spirit in others. In partnership with The University of Texas, the Dell Social Innovation Challenge invites college students around the world to enter their transformative ideas for solving social problems. Without further ado, the finalists are:
- e-Education in 5 Continents, which seeks to provide video lecture classes to poor, rural students in Bangladesh, Palestine and Rwanda, to address the gap between rich and poor.
- Essmart Global, which focuses on the distribution gap by combining process innovations in sourcing high-quality technologies and distributing them to rural areas via an extensive retail shop network that services local communities.
- Humanure Power Project, which aims to provide sanitation and electricity to rural India by building community toilets and harnessing human waste to produce methane and electricity that will be distributed to the community via 12-V batteries.
- Nanoly, which seeks to address the 2.1 million people who die each year from vaccine-preventable diseases because of accessibility problems, by enabling vaccines to be delivered to anywhere in the world without refrigeration.
- 33 Buckets, which has designed a filter that will provide a girls' school in rural Bangladesh with arsenic-free water that they can sell to the community in a sustainable microfinance business.
The teams are making their travel plans now and will arrive in Austin on June 8 to compete in the challenge, sponsored by Dell with the University of Texas at Austin. That weekend, these students will pitch their ideas with hopes of taking home a portion of the $150,000 in cash prizes and Dell technology to help bring their dreams to fruition. We’ll announce winners on June 12.
At Dell, we believe that innovation and entrepreneurship are not “born” but can be “bred” through the right community, support, tools and inspiration. And we’re especially delighted to announce the winner of the Dell Technology Award: AfyaZima Blood Pressure mCuff, a low-cost device that eases blood pressure measurement and transmission via a mobile in hopes of early hypertension diagnosis, especially in areas with low resources.
As we count down the days until the final weekend, stay tuned to @dell4good to hear stories about these teams, our People’s Choice Award winners, and the many other students who want to make their world a better place!