Fellows will guide students through the process of brainstorming their idea, collecting feedback, and designing a minimum viable product. At the end of the program, they'll pitch their ideas to a panel of social entrepreneurs.
Over the course of 5 working meetings, fellows will guide their group members to explore one of the topic areas below and identify a specific problem they observe within the topic area. Students will create a profile of the "users" who face such a problem, and develop a digital solution to address the problem. The 6th and final meeting is the group pitch day.
Consumption is a major driver of the world economy, but also of the world's waste. What should we do with all of the discarded plastic, paper, metal, and other materials we produce? The answer to this question has a huge impact on a number of issues affecting all of humanity: land, sea, and air pollution; climate change; and urban planning, to name a few.
We used to think of the "technology divide" as separating those with money from those without: children from wealthy families would have more access to technology, making them more technology literate (and giving them better job prospects), than those from poorer families. However, now we are seeing that children from poorer families actually spend more time in front of phone and computer screens, affecting their education and wider development. What can be done to narrow this divide?
Countries like India and China are urbanizing at some of the highest rates seen in human history, while countries like the U.S. are seeing urban decline, or the erosion of culturally distinct areas due to gentrification. These are just some of the modern issues that arise from the phenomenon of human migration. How can we ensure that everyone is able to live a fulfilling life no matter where in the world they go?
From QR-code payments to blockchain to mobile-only banks, the digitization of the banking industry is changing the way people interact with their money, often even eliminating the need for a physical asset. What opportunities are there within this trend to increase access to the banking system for poor and rural populations?
Around the world, access to education is often determined by how much money a family earns. In the U.S., schools receive revenue based on taxes assessed on the value of property within their district, meaning that schools in wealthy areas have greater access to funding for teachers and classroom materials than those in poorer areas. In less-developed countries, children in poorer areas sometimes must forego an education in order to provide for their families. What can be done to make access to quality education more equitable and more readily available?
The increasing average age of a population means that not only are there more elderly people in need of care, but also that there are less younger people as a percentage of the population participating in growing the economy by working or starting a business. This can lead to strained state resources, lower quality of life for the elderly, and increased pressure on young people to provide for both their parents and their own children. How can we ensure that we are able to support aging populations while maintaining growth in the overall economy?
* These topics are provided for reference only and may be different for the current program.
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