This year, for the first time, I’m asking my community to help me design the next XPRIZE Competitions. Help solve Grand Challenges, and at the same time you might win $100,000.
Tomorrow, June 29, at 12:30 pm Eastern / 9:30 am Pacific, I’ll be holding a livestreaming event to teach you about XPRIZE design.
This year, we have five Design Challenge areas for you to sink your teeth into:
- Natural Disaster Prediction
- Saving Coral Reefs
- Off-Grid Energy Access
- Feeding the Next Billion
- Lifting Farmers Out of Poverty
If you want to participate in the design of an XPRIZE competition, all you need to do is head over to the Challenge homepage. Submissions are due at 9 am Pacific on July 23.
I hope you’ll be inspired to join the competition (or help design it), and wish you the very best of luck.
P.S. If you’re interested, I’ve recorded a series of videos to give you a Masterclass in XPRIZE design.
P.P.S. To get you thinking, I dove into 2 of the 5 Grand Challenges below: Saving Coral Reefs and Natural Disaster Prediction. I’ll feature the other three next week.
- Natural Disaster Prediction Design Challenge: Your mission is to design an XPRIZE to save countless lives and massively reduce economic loss through better prediction of earthquakes and tropical cyclones.
Natural disasters leave in their wake a trail of injury, death, lost livestock, property damage, and enormous economic damages.
Over 80 percent of the world’s population lives in areas prone to earthquakes, tropical cyclones, tsunamis, floods, landslides and the like. With climate change, this number is only rising.
In the last 10 years, over 600,000 people have lost their lives to natural disasters. And as to economic losses, these disasters can be irrevocably catastrophic.
When Japan suffered its earthquake and subsequent tsunami of 2011, for example, economic losses topped $360 billion. And in 2017, initial damages of the Atlantic hurricane season alone surpassed a whopping $282 billion.
What set of critical landmarks would we have to reach to predict and mitigate earthquakes, tropical cyclones, and the myriad natural disasters they trigger along with them?
How can you help us incentivize global solutions that save hundreds of thousands of lives and mitigate hundreds of billions in economic damages?
- Saving Coral Reefs Design Challenge: Design an XPRIZE that incentivizes novel and scalable innovations to protect and restore coral reefs.
Every single hour, we lose a 100x120m patch of coral reef. Already, over half of all coral reefs have been lost.
And by 2050, 90 percent or more could be gone due to coral bleaching from climate change, water pollution, and destructive fishing methods.
Posing the greatest global threat to coral reefs, 93 percent of climate change heat is absorbed by the ocean, causing corals to expel their symbiotic algae, turn white, and die off at unprecedented rates.
Currently, severe barriers inhibit our protection of this vital oceanic resource, including lack of scalable solutions (most reef restoration must be done by hand), too little funding for tech interventions, and poor legal enforcement.
But while they only occupy 0.1 percent of the seafloor, coral reefs are home to 25 percent of all marine species and support the livelihoods of 500 million people, providing fisheries, tourism, and natural ocean buffers against coastal storms.
Protecting and restoring corals has monumental environmental, financial and humanitarian implications.
What benchmarks could you set to incentivize scalable and innovative solutions to ensure this critical resource?