Grand Challenges: Science and Technology Solutions for International Development

Friday, 14 February 2014: 1:30 PM-4:30 PM
Columbus KL (Hyatt Regency Chicago)
Does crowdsourcing development problems lead to better solutions? This symposium presents the Open Source Development hypothesis which states that expanding the number, diversity, and disciplinary expertise of solvers focused on development challenges, by focusing on the problem— not a specific solution—will lead to more efficient, cost-effective, and relevant solutions. Grand Challenges Canada, X Prize, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Blum Center at University of California, Berkeley, and USAID’s Office of Science and Technology are working to make this approach a reality within our institutions because we recognize that there is global talent to solve development problems, but the opportunities to apply that global talent are still very limited. These innovative programs use evidence-based analyses to frame the development challenges and then engage solver communities to help source solutions and articulate demand. Presenters will provide examples of Open Source Development templates, their successes and failures to date, and the potential futures for these exemplars. A goal of this session is to expose participants to new innovation models and allow them to get an in-depth understanding of the paradigms from their creators and practitioners. Participants will leave the session with new insight into how they and their organizations can participate in these new innovation models for development, leading to a larger scientific community working to solve intractable development challenges.
Ku McMahan, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
Alex Dehgan, USAID
Peter A. Singer, Canadian Academy of Health Sciences
The Grand Challenges Canada Model
Steve Buchsbaum, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Grand Challenge Grants and the Gates Model: What We Have Learned So Far
Paul Bunje, X PRIZE Foundation
The X-Prize Model: Wins and Losses To Date
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