i3 | April 02, 2020

CES and the World Bank Group Announce the Global Tech Challenge

Ellen Savage

CES is the global stage for innovation, and CES and the World Bank Group are calling on the tech community to solve some of the biggest issues of our time. The Global Tech Challenge, announced at CES 2020, offers funding, market-entry support, and access to technology buyers in three key areas — digital health, gender equality and resilience.

CES showcases the newest and most innovative developments in technology. But the benefits and opportunities of technology are not equally distributed across the globe. The World Bank Group invests roughly $60 billion each year in over 100 developing countries through public and private partners. The combined power of CES and the World Bank Group can galvanize innovators, governments, companies and people — from both developed and developing countries — to change our world for the better.

The Global Tech Challenge focuses on gender equality, resilience and digital health.

Why is the Global Tech Challenge focused on digital health, gender equality and resilience? 

Because they are three of the largest problems facing our world, and ones which technology can play a key role in solving. Technology brings health solutions to regions and populations which in the past were difficult to reach. 

More than halfof the world’s female population (52%) is still not using the internet. And in the last 20 years, climate-related disasters have caused an estimated $2.9 trillion in direct losses, and by 2050, population growth and rapid urbanization alone could put 1.3 billion people and $158 trillion in assets at risk.

The World Bank Group invests roughly $60 billion each year in over 100 developing countries through public and private partners.

Saving Lives with Tech

CTA and the World Bank believe we have a duty to ensure digital health advances reach citizens in underdeveloped countries.

Gender equity is a critical global issue. In least-developed countries, women are 33% less likely to use the internet than men. And in some parts of the globe, the digital gender gap is widening. Across different sectors, technology products are often designed without consideration of women’s specific needs. We all know that digital inclusion can unlock tremendous opportunities — and now is the time to seize them.

The heartbreaking wildfires in Australia are an illustration of the impact of climate change. Innovative and disruptive technologies can transform the way countries and communities build resilience to climate risks and increasingly intense and frequent disasters.Innovators with solutions to address digital health, gender equity and resilience are encouraged to enter the Global Tech Challenge. 

The Gender Equity and Resilience Challenges will open for entries in the first quarter of this year. Later this year, finalists will be selected to conduct pilot projects and build commercial projects. Selected companies will receive market-entry support and funding to pilot solutions in local markets of developing countries. And to gain even more exposure, the finalists will be featured at CES 2021.

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