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PRESS RELEASE: MIT Solve Announces Solve Challenge Finals on September 23 During UN General Assembly Week with Diane von Furstenberg, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and Cheryl Dorsey

60 global tech entrepreneur finalists will pitch their solutions to 350+ leaders and judges; the 30+ best will form the next Solver class with more than $650,000 in prize funding available

  • Solve Challenge Finals will convene 350+ leaders in philanthropy, business, government, and academia on September 23 in New York City

  • The full agenda is available here

  • To apply for media credentials, please email press@solve.mit.edu

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., September 5, 2018 — Solve, an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, today announced the 60 Challenge finalists—selected from a pool of 1,150 applicants from 110 countries—who will present a live pitch of their solution to one of the most pressing global Challenges at the Solve Challenge Finals on September 23 in New York City to kick off UN General Assembly week. 

During the event, the finalists will pitch their solutions to one of Solve’s 2018 Global Challenges: (1) Coastal Communities, (2) Frontlines of Health, (3) Teachers & Educators, and (4) Work of the Future to a panel of expert judges from organizations such as the World Bank Group, Rockefeller Foundation, TPG/The Rise Fund, World Health Organization, Citi, and Starbucks, and a live audience. After the pitches, Diane von Furstenberg, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and Cheryl Dorsey will discuss bridging the pioneer gap for early stage innovators to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“Solve Challenge Finals is a unique opportunity to showcase the most promising tech-based solutions to global challenges.” said Solve’s Executive Director, Alex Amouyel. “We had incredible diversity of solutions—nonprofits, for-profits, academic projects, all ages, and over 110 countries were represented. The judges had the difficult task of choosing the most promising ones. In the end, they chose 60 finalists who hail from 24 countries, and over 50% of these finalists are women.”

During the event, Solve’s esteemed panel of judges will choose 30+ finalists to become the next Solver class. As a Solver, these entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to meet and build partnerships with Solve members to help accelerate their solutions. More than $650,000 of funding is available for selected Solver teams, including:

  • The General Motors Prize for Advanced Technologies

  • The Artificial Intelligence for the Betterment of Humanity Prize, supported by the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation

  • UN Women She Innovates Prize for Gender-Responsive Innovation, made possible by Citi, with support from SAP Next-Gen

  • The Blockchain for Social Impact Prize to become ConsenSys Blockchain for Social Impact Coalition (BSIC) Fellows 

The full event program can be found here. Program participants include:

  • Diane von Furstenberg, Founder and Chairman, Diane von Furstenberg

  • Cheryl L. Dorsey, President, Echoing Green

  • Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chair of the Board of Gavi, The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisations

  • Cynthia Barnhart, Chancellor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  • Coastal Communities finalists and judges

  • Frontlines of Health finalists and judges

  • Teachers & Educator finalists and judges

  • Work of the Future finalists and judges

Media interested in attending Solve Challenge Finals should contact Solve at press@solve.mit.edu. Non-media interested in attending can inquire about Solve membership at membership@solve.mit.edu.

About Solve:  

Solve is an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that advances lasting solutions from tech entrepreneurs to address the world's most pressing problems. Solve issues four Challenges each year to find the most promising Solver class to drive transformational change. Solve then deploys its global community of private, public, and nonprofit leaders to form partnerships these Solver teams need to scale their impact. This year, more than 1,150 people from 110 countries submitted solutions to Solve’s four Challenges: (1) Coastal Communities, (2) Frontlines of Health, (3) Teachers & Educators, and (4) Work of the Future. Join the community at solve.mit.edu.

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