Presented with
Evaluating Solutions

Octava Social Innovation Challenge

How can edtech solutions improve learning outcomes for underserved learners in Southeast Asia while being affordable and accessible?

Submissions are Closed


Extended Deadline: October 18th, 12:00pm [noon] Singapore Time 

Information Session: October 7th, 2021

Who can apply to the Octava Social Innovation Challenge?

This Challenge will be open to anyone from around the world who would like to contribute solutions that leverage edtech in one (or more) of five Southeast Asian countries: Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, and Malaysia. At a minimum, solutions must be:

  • Currently deployed in at least one of the Octava Challenge’s target countries: Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia.

  • At least at the Pilot stage—solutions must have demonstrated usability.

If you have a relevant solution, we hope you’ll apply!

How are we CrowdSolving the Octava Social Innovation Challenge?

  1. Sourcing Solutions: Anyone who meets the criteria above can participate in this Challenge and submit a solution. Whether you’re working on a pilot or scaling your program or product, we’re looking for innovators and entrepreneurs with the most promising solutions who can have an impact in our target Southeast Asian countries.

  2. Selecting Solutions: Once the submission deadline passes, judging begins. After an initial screening by Solve staff and community reviewers, Challenge judges will select the most promising solutions as Finalists. These Finalists will be invited to pitch their solutions at a pitch event, where judges will then select the winners.

What type of solutions will be accepted to the Octava Social Innovation Challenge?

Solution applications must be written in English. This Challenge considers solutions at various stages of development–from pilot to scale. At a minimum, solutions must have at least a pilot with demonstrated usability in one (or more) of the Octava Challenge target countries: Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia.

  • Pilot: A project, initiative, venture, or organization applying its research, product, service, or business model in at least one context or community.

  • Growth: An initiative, venture, or organization with an established product, service, or business model rolled out in one or, ideally, several contexts or communities, which is poised for further growth.

  • Scale: A sustainable project or enterprise working in several contexts, communities or countries that is looking to scale significantly, focusing on increased efficiency.

The most important thing is that your solution addresses the focus of the Octava Social Innovation Challenge. Through open innovation, this Challenge is looking for a diverse portfolio of solutions across stages of development and teams. We believe that there is no one solution to the world’s most complex challenges—and encourage people of all backgrounds to submit their applications.

How will my solution be evaluated?

The judging panel for this Challenge will be comprised of leaders and experts from across industries. After an initial screening by Solve staff and community reviewers, the judges will score the screened solutions based on the following criteria. All criteria will be given equal weight:

  • Alignment: The solution addresses the key dimensions of Octava Social Innovation Challenge.

  • Potential for Impact: The planned solution implementation has the potential to impact lives in Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, and/or Malaysia. 

  • Feasibility: Solution implementation is feasible, and the team has a plan for financial sustainability.

  • Innovative Approach: The solution includes a new or significantly improved approach to address the Challenge.

  • Leadership Ability: The solution is led by a visionary entrepreneur, innovator, or team who have deep expertise on the problem they are trying to solve, the ability to adapt and respond to feedback, along with the necessary skills and track record to improve, expand, or replicate their solution.

  • Human-Centered Design and Inclusion: The solution is designed with and for currently underserved and in low resource communities or low resource education settings; the solution team demonstrates proximity to the community, and embodies and addresses diversity, equity, and inclusion through their solution.

  • Scalability: The solution can be scaled to affect the lives of more people in Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, and/or Malaysia.

  • Partnership Potential: The applicant clearly explains how the solution would benefit from the resources that the Octava Foundation and MIT Solve is positioned to provide.

What is the Challenge Timeline?

  • July 15, 2021: Challenge Opens

  • October 18, 2021: [EXTENDED] Deadline for Applicants to Submit a Solution

  • December 10, 2021: Finalists Announced

  • January 26, 2022: Pitch Event for Finalists

  • February 2022: Winners Announced

What will I receive if my solution is selected?

Finalists will be invited to a pitch event to present their solutions in front of distinguished judges. A total pool of $500,000 in prize funding is available for up to 8 selected winners of the Challenge. Each winning solution will receive a minimum of $50,000. 

In addition to funding, each Challenge winner will participate in a ten-month tailored support program run by MIT Solve and the Octava Foundation that will include: 

  • A comprehensive needs assessment to determine what resources and support are most appropriate in order to accelerate your impact

  • Access to a network of resource partners, mentors,  and coaches across industries and sectors

  • Learning and development modules aimed at refining your business model, theory of change, and plans for scaling

  • Invitation to participate in Solve’s annual flagship Solve at MIT event (held in May each year)

  • A monitoring and evaluation track to support you in building your impact measurement practice

  • A peer-to-peer network to build a community of practice with dedicated spaces to convene throughout the duration of the support program

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