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PRESS RELEASE: MIT Solve Announces Over $1.5 Million in Funding for 2020 Solver Teams

Solve is seeking solutions to critical Global Challenges, including Health Security & Pandemics; innovators should apply by June 18, 2020

April 14, 2020 (Cambridge, MA)MIT Solve, an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a mission to solve world challenges, today announced a prize pool of over $1.5 million for its next class of Solver teams. In the last three years, Solve has brokered impactful partnerships providing over $20 million in funding commitments for Solver teams and entrepreneurs, in addition to in-kind support. 

Prize funders include General Motors, Patrick J. McGovern Foundation, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, The Elevate Prize Foundation, Vodafone Americas Foundation, Andan Foundation, and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Court. Prize sponsors will convene at Virtual Solve at MIT on May 12, 2020 with the Solve community, including 2019 Solver teams, Solve Members, and Partners

“In the face of tremendous world challenges—including a pandemic that threatens the health, economic security, and education of billions of people around the world—we deeply appreciate the organizations that support the critical work of our Solver teams,” said Alex Amouyel, Executive Director of MIT Solve. “We look forward to supporting our incredible innovators who work day in and day out on solutions to these challenges.” 

In response to Covid-19, Solve launched a Health Security & Pandemics Challenge to support both near-term and long-term solutions to the crisis. In addition, Solve seeks solutions from tech-based social innovators around the world for the other 2020 Global Challenges: Good Jobs & Inclusive Entrepreneurship, Learning for Girls & Women, Sustainable Food Systems, and Maternal & Newborn Health. Anyone, anywhere can submit a solution and apply to access the $1.5 million in prize funding by June 18, 2020. 

Finalists will be invited to pitch their solutions at Solve Challenge Finals during UN General Assembly Week on September 20, 2020. At the event, leading cross-sector experts will select 30-35 of the most promising tech-based innovators to become Solver teams. These teams will take part in Solve’s nine-month program to scale their solutions with funding, networking, mentorship, marketing support, and more from the Solve community. 

2020 MIT Solve Prizes available for selected Solver teams:

  • Solver Funding: Solve will award a $10,000 grant to each Solver selected during Solve Challenge Finals.

  • The Gulbenkian Award for Adult Literacy supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation 

    • Solutions that increase literacy rates among adults and advance inclusive economic growth through greater digital literacy are eligible for the Gulbenkian Award for Adult Literacy. Up to $300,000 will be granted across up to four eligible Solver teams from the Good Jobs & Inclusive Entrepreneurship and Learning for Girls & Women Challenges.

  • The Elevate Prize for Health Security supported by The Elevate Prize Foundation 

    • One Solver from the Health Security & Pandemics Challenge will receive The Elevate Prize for Health Security. The selected Solver will be named an Elevate Prize Global Hero and will participate in both the MIT Solver program and the Elevate Prize Global Heroes program, receiving a minimum of $300,000 over two years and ongoing support from The Elevate Prize Foundation and MIT Solve.

  • The AI for Humanity Prize supported by the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation 

    • The AI for Humanity Prize is open to solutions that are already using strong data science, artificial intelligence, or machine learning to benefit humanity, and to solutions that plan to amplify their impact through the use of these technologies. Up to $200,000 will be granted across any of Solve’s current Global Challenges. 

  • GM Prizes supported by General Motors

    • Up to $150,000 will be granted across six Solver teams from the Learning for Girls & Women and Good Jobs & Inclusive Entrepreneurship Challenges. Solutions that encourage access to learning opportunities for the world’s most vulnerable girls and women, including access to STEM education, are eligible for the GM Prize on Learning for Girls & Women. Solutions that enable working-age adults to build the skills and resources they need to access well-paying jobs in a changing marketplace are eligible for the GM Prize on Good Jobs & Inclusive Entrepreneurship.

  • Innovation for Women Prize supported by the Vodafone Americas Foundation 

    • Solutions that use innovative technology to improve the quality of life for women and girls are eligible for the Innovation for Women Prize. Vodafone Americas Foundation will award up to $75,000 across up to three Solver teams addressing any of Solve’s current Global Challenges.

  • The Andan Prize for Innovation in Refugee Inclusion supported by the Andan Foundation 

    • The Andan Prize for Innovation in Refugee Inclusion of $100,000 will be awarded to up to four eligible Solver teams from any of Solve’s current Global Challenges, and is open to solutions that advance the economic, financial, and political inclusion of refugees. The prize is funded by Andan Foundation, a Swiss non-profit foundation dedicated to supporting solutions that promote refugee resilience, self-reliance, and integration. 

  • Microsoft: Solver teams across any of Solve’s current Global Challenges will be qualified to apply to the Microsoft Global Social Entrepreneurship program and will receive customized business support and free access to Microsoft’s cloud services, including up to $120,000 in Azure credits.

  • The Health Workforce Innovation Prize supported by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Court  

  • Solve Members, including Living Proof and Kroger, have also committed prize funding. 

About Solve:  

Solve is an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a mission to solve world challenges. Solve is a marketplace for social impact innovation. Through open innovation Challenges, Solve finds incredible tech-based social entrepreneurs all around the world. Solve then brings together MIT’s innovation ecosystem and a community of Members to fund and support these entrepreneurs to help them drive lasting, transformational impact. Join Solve on this journey at solve.mit.edu.

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