THINKTECH is a €1 million project to support and grow ideas for a better Ireland. Created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland with support from Google.org and Government, the THINKTECH challenge identifies innovative ideas that use technology to create positive social impact in Ireland. THINKTECH is seeking proposals that impact lives and touch hearts.
THINKTECH aims to support the most innovative, technology-driven solutions to Ireland’s critical social issues to grow and scale, within Ireland or even beyond. Social Innovation Fund Ireland, and Google.org, believe that technology has the power to transform our lives for the better.
What kind of projects is THINKTECH looking for?
Applicants should be able to demonstrate how they will use both technology and innovation to make Ireland better. Proposals could involve a broad range of technologies, should have already demonstrated progress towards measurable social impact, and have the ability to scale or spread across Ireland.
What kinds of issues?
Projects that address any critical social issue in the Republic of Ireland are eligible.
What stage of development?
All projects that are up and running may qualify, but THINKTECH has a special interest in projects at the growth stage of development. If there is not yet a minimum viable product, there needs to be strong evidence of your project’s feasibility.
What types of technology? At what stage of development?
THINKTECH anticipates that winners could be innovating in one of several ways;
- Has developed a new technology that offers a solution to a critical social issue.
- Applies an existing technology in a new way or with a new target group.
- Uses the technology to grow the reach of the solution.
We anticipate that a range of technologies can qualify, from leveraging the power of the web and open internet platforms, through apps, and assistive technologies.
It must be possible to demonstrate a proof-of-concept of the technical solution without the need for significant technical development, i.e. it fits within the framework of NASA: Technology Readiness Levels 4-7. https://www.nasa.gov/directorates/heo/scan/engineering/technology/txt_accordion1.html
Eligible projects will be able to demonstrate;
Social impact criteria
- The project must address a critical social issue in Ireland.
- The solution proposed must be innovative in an Irish context.
- The solution must have potential and a desire to scale or replicate in Ireland (it may also have potential internationally, but this is not a requirement).
- The solution must provide evidence that it is up and running,and have been tested at least in a minimal way.
- Could the project create jobs? (Preferable not critical).
- That it is based on the island of Ireland and will make its main impact in the Republic of Ireland.
- The project must use technology as a core part of the solution it offers.
- The effect of the technology on the critical social issue it tackles is or has the potential to be transformative.
- Must have access to relevant technology expertise as part of the team (consultant, core team member, or other).
- It must be possible to demonstrate a proof-of-concept of the technical solution without the need for significant technical development.
Who can apply?
Social enterprises, charities, and other not-for-profits are eligible for participation in THINKTECH.
How long is THINKTECH open for applications?
THINKTECH is open for applications until Sunday July 31st 2016.
What is the timeframe for the THINKTECH programme?
Awardees will be announced in November 2016, and its five month programme runs from early January to the end of May 2017.
How do I apply?
What is expected of candidates?
THINKTECH candidates are expected to provide full and truthful information during the selection process and if awarded, during the THINKTECH programme.
Candidates are expected to be available for interviews on the 20th, 21st, 22nd September and for a Workshop on either the 29th or 30th September.
What is expected of THINKTECH awardees?
THINKTECH is a programme not a grant.
THINKTECH awardees will commit one day per week to the THINKTECH progamme for five months from January to May 2017, and are expected to work on their project during the rest of the week.
THINKTECH Awardees can expect to spend 2 days per month in Dublin as part of the programme.
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