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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe


This category includes articles that apply to social good in general and may include policy, practice and other stories relevant to everyone.

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The Dodo’s Wildly Popular Series Comeback Kids: Animal Edition Returns For A Second Season

Top Digital Show with 140MM Views To Launch New Season on March 24

Press Release – New York, NY – March 21, 2018 – The Dodo, the no. 1 animal brand on digital, is bringing back its popular series Comeback Kids: Animal Edition for a second season across multiple platforms. The first of the five-episode series will go live on Facebook Watch on March 24 and air on YouTube and Twitter the following day. New episodes will premiere each week through the end of April.

The show features determined animals with a lot of heart who manage to beat the odds and make incredible comebacks — all thanks to the devoted people who refuse to give up on them. Each episode takes viewers on one animal’s individual rescue and rehabilitation journey, and captures what it means to be truly resilient through the stories of these inspiring comeback kids.

Here is the official trailer for Season 2 of Comeback Kids: Animal Edition; the second season follows:

  • Jeri, an orphaned baby monkey who was found all alone in South Africa with a badly broken leg. Rescuers took her to a sanctuary so she could get better, and in this episode, The Dodo builds up to the moment where she meets her new monkey mom for the very first time.
  • Lazarus, a kitten found frozen in a winter storm. A loving family went above and beyond to rescue little Lazarus as a kitten, and in this episode we relive the rescue as well as his path to recovery.
  • Pumpkin, a mini foal who has trouble walking and is much smaller than the other horses. In this episode, The Dodo shows her receiving new leg braces and finally getting the chance to live her life to the fullest.

The Dodo is the no. 1 media publisher on Facebook Watch with 3 of the top 6 shows on the platform for views per episode (Source: CrowdTangle). The Dodo has 3 of the top 5 shows on Watch for shares per episode and engagements per episode (Source: CrowdTangle).

About The Dodo:

The Dodo is the number one digital media brand for animal people. The Dodo is a mission-driven publisher — we tell stories that connect people to animals and empower people to help animals in need. We’re committed to looking at the world through animals’ eyes and engaging our audience through a combination of entertaining, uplifting, meaningful content that inspires people and helps pave the way for progress. The Dodo is part of Group Nine Media — a top 10 global publisher.

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Community College Students’ Housing And Food Insecurity Subject Of Two Significant Studies By Temple University

Press Release – PHILADELPHIA, PA (March 21, 2018) — Programs serving community college students in Houston, TX, and Tacoma, WA, struggling with homelessness and food insecurity are the subject of two major studies led by Sara Goldrick-Rab at Temple University’s College of Education.

An estimated half of all college students struggle with food insecurity at public and private institutions, and with the cost of higher education at an all-time high, more students are facing the challenges of homelessness as well. Community college students face the highest rates of hunger and homelessness in college. With fewer social programs available to help them, fewer financial aid dollars available from federal, state and local governments, and families’ standards of living declining, even community college is slipping beyond the reach of most people.

Led by Dr. Sara Goldrick-Rab, an expert in the field, these two studies will examine whether programs put into place to combat these problems are having success in doing so. Helping students address the real price of attending college—which range far beyond just tuition—will help them stay in school, finish their studies, and have a much better chance of reaching the middle class.

“We have to move from identifying problems to assessing the most effective solutions,” said Dr. Goldrick-Rab. “I’m grateful for the philanthropic support to make these evaluations of ‘what works’ possible.”

In Houston, Dr. Goldrick-Rab is working with Dr. Daphne Hernandez at the University of Houston and M. Davis and Company of Philadelphia on a $557,691 grant funded by the William T. Grant Foundation to study “food scholarships.” In cooperation with the Houston Food Bank’s Food for Change program, this program seeks to help Houston Community College (HCC) students by providing them with at least 60 pounds of food every two weeks, including seasonal produce, frozen meat, dry goods and some canned goods.

In Tacoma, Dr. Goldrick-Rab is working with Sarah Cordes of Temple University, Katharine Broton of the University of Iowa, Christine Stevens of the University of Washington-Tacoma, and M. Davis and Company of Philadelphia on a $330,000 grant from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation to examine the effectiveness of the first program in the United States to offer housing vouchers to homeless college students. This three-year study is following the College Housing Assistance Program (CHAP) operated by the Tacoma Housing Authority (THA), in partnership with Tacoma Community College (TCC). One hundred and fifty vouchers are being awarded to homeless and near-homeless students through this program, and the study is following the recipients, to evaluate whether government-funded housing vouchers can improve the educational and social outcomes for these students.

In both cases, these programs are a response to a growing need observed by both colleges and the communities around them. In Tacoma, the THA sees the voucher program as mechanism that can not only help the people it houses succeed in school/college, but also to promote the success of schools and colleges serving low-income students. In Houston, a similar goal is envisioned.

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The Gordon Parks Foundation Hosts Its Annual Awards Dinner & Auction Celebrating The Arts & Humanitarianism

2018 Celebration to Honor Director Ava DuVernay, Philanthropist Ronald O. Perelman, Author Ta-Nehisi Coates, Civil Rights Attorney Sherrilyn Ifill, Photographer Sally Mann, and Documentary Photographer Jamel Shabazz

Press Release – March 20, 2018 – Pleasantville, New York – On Tuesday, May 22, at Cipriani 42nd Street, The Gordon Parks Foundation will host its Annual Awards Dinner and Auction celebrating Parks’ rich legacy and honoring those that continue to make an impact in the performing and visual arts and humanitarianism. Honorees for the 2018 Awards include: director, screenwriter and filmmaker Ava DuVernay; businessman and philanthropist, Ronald O. Perelman; author Ta-Nehisi Coates; civil rights attorney Sherrilyn Ifill; photographer Sally Mann; and documentary photographer Jamel Shabazz. Each of the honorees was chosen for their dedication and support of arts and humanitarianism and overall embodiment of Parks’ commitment to social justice. Previous honorees include: Congressman John Lewis, GRAMMY award-nominated singer-songwriter and producer Janelle Monáe, photographer Annie Leibovitz, and Equal Justice Initiative founder Bryan Stevenson. The gala will feature performances by rhythm and blues singer-songwriter Mavis Staples.

“We’re pleased to recognize this year’s group of distinguished honorees and the impact that they continue to have in matters of social justice through their work in the arts, philanthropy and more as we again come together to celebrate the lasting legacy of Gordon Parks.” says Peter W. Kunhardt, Jr., Executive Director of The Gordon Parks Foundation.

The evening will be co-chaired by Karl Lagerfeld, Kendrick Lamar, Valerie Jarrett, Alicia Keys and Kassem Dean, Usher IV, Janelle Monáe, Common, Henry Louis Gates Jr., Kenneth and Kathryn Chenault, Judy and Leonard Lauder, and Alexander Soros. As part of the gala celebration a group of Gordon Parks photographs will be auctioned off with all proceeds from the evening to support the Foundation’s ongoing artistic and educational programs.

In addition to recognizing this year’s distinguished honorees, the Foundation will also highlight the 2018 recipients of the Gordon Parks Foundation Fellowship–photographer Deana Lawson and multidisciplinary artist Derrick Adams. Now in its second year, The Gordon Parks Foundation Fellowship Program supports artists working across a range of artistic disciplines – from photography and music to film and beyond – by providing grants of $10,000 and an exhibition at the Foundation’s space in Pleasantville, New York. Fellowships are awarded to artists working within themes of social justice.

For the past decade, The Gordon Parks Foundation has provided scholarships to help further the exploration of visual and performing arts to students across the country whose artistic talent reflect the passion, vision and humanity of Gordon Parks. The Foundation’s longtime partner institutions include: the Fashion Institute of Technology, Ghetto Film School, Harlem School of the Arts, New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Purchase College (SUNY), Pratt Institute, and National YoungArts Foundation. This year, the Foundation is proud to add Columbia Journalism School to its list of partners.

For more information about The Gordon Parks Foundation, please visit: To purchase tickets for the 2018 Gordon Parks Foundation Awards & Auction, please contact Buckley Hall Events at 914-579-1000 or

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The Origin Of The Faeces? How Sharks Nourish Coral Reefs

Marine predators play vital role in supplying nutrients to coral reef ecosystems

Press Release – Sharks transfer vital nutrients from their open ocean feeding grounds to shallower coral reefs via their faeces, according to a pioneering study that has mapped this important contribution to these fragile ecosystems for the first time.

Published today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the study – led by Imperial College London alongside partners including international conservation charity ZSL (Zoological Society of London) – focused on grey reef sharks (Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos), a predatory species commonly associated with coral environments but whose wider ecological role is not fully understood

Working in the waters surrounding Palmyra Atoll – one of the Northern Line Islands and a US National Wildlife Refuge, situated south of Hawaii in the middle of the Pacific Ocean – the team used acoustic tags to map the sharks’ movements across the atoll, combining these insights with existing knowledge about their feeding habits in the open ocean (pelagic) environments where they consume much of their prey.

Scientists then analysed this tracking data as a spatial network of movements and were able for the first time to estimate the quantities of nitrogen deposited around the remote, unfished reef of Palmyra Atoll via the sharks’ faecal material. As a result, they estimate that this specific population of grey reef sharks – believed to number around 8,300 individual animals – contributes a combined total of 94.5kg of nitrogen onto the reef ecosystem per day, an amount that is likely to contribute substantially to reef primary productivity.

Commenting on this study, senior co-author Dr David Jacoby from ZSL’s Institute of Zoology said: “While estimating quantities of shark poo may not sound like the most glamorous of pastimes, the findings of this research have fascinating implications for our understanding not only of fragile coral reef ecosystems but also the ecological significance of grey reef sharks – a species currently classified as Near Threatened by the IUCN Red List.

“By foraging for prey in deep pelagic waters, often miles offshore, it’s increasingly clear that these mobile predators can act as vital ‘nutrient vectors’ to shallow reefs – bringing with them precious sources of nutrients like nitrogen, which in turn effectively act as a fertiliser for the thousands of other species that call these reef environments home.

“Coupled with their better-known role as predators, our study underlines another, less obvious role played by reef sharks in improving the resilience of these fragile habitats and again underlines the vital importance of conserving these and other wide-ranging predators.”

ZSL scientists including Dr David Jacoby will be showcasing their tracking and monitoring work at the 2018 Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition – further information here:

* Jessica J. Williams, Yannis P. Papastamatiou, Jennifer E. Caselle, Darcy Bradley and David M. P. Jacoby. 2018 Mobile marine predators: an understudied source of nutrients to coral reefs in an unfished atoll. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B. RSPB-2017-2456.R1

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SDSU Hosts Kyoto Prize Winner

Takashi Mimura will speak at SDSU’s Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center on March 21

Press Release – SAN DIEGO, Calif. (March 19, 2018) – As part of the annual Kyoto Prize Symposium, San Diego State University will host renowned engineer Takashi Mimura, who received the 2017 Kyoto Prize—Japan’s highest private award for global achievement—in Advanced Technology.

Mimura, a Japanese semiconductor engineer, invented the high electron mobility transistor, or HEMT, which has overcome fundamental speed limitations associated with conventional semiconductors. HEMT technology has opened new frontiers in high-frequency electronics for applications ranging from satellite broadcasting and wireless phone networks to automotive collision-avoidance systems, representing a pivotal contribution to information and communications technology.

Mimura’s lecture, “My 50 Years with the Transistor,” will take place from 10-11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 21 in the Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center. The event is free and open to the public, but registration is requested.

SDSU has arranged for high school students—many from underserved areas of the region—to attend Mimura’s lecture with the goal of introducing them to the university and the idea of pursuing careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields.

“Dr. Mimura is an internationally acclaimed researcher and it is an honor to welcome him to San Diego State University,” said Stephen Welter, SDSU’s vice president for research and dean of Graduate Affairs. “His groundbreaking findings in the semiconductor field have greatly contributed information and communication technology with applications ranging from satellite communication to car-borne collision avoidance systems using radar. He is an outstanding role model for not only our students, faculty and staff in STEM fields but also for life in general.”

During his lecture, Mimura hopes to inspire the audience, especially younger attendees, to take risks.

“In research and development, one tries to invent a new thing or solve a problem, which no one has ever done,” said Mimura. “It is therefore natural that most of new ideas and experiments turn out to be unsuccessful. I learned through the HEMT research that successful experiences are just as important for the growth of young people as unsuccessful ones.”

Mimura is an executive visiting researcher at Advanced ICT Research Institute in Japan and an honorary fellow with Fujitsu Laboratories, where he has worked since the 1970s.

Mimura noted that collaboration has been the key to success for many of his most cherished career accomplishments.

“I believe that research and development can’t be executed by one person in any research fields,” said Mimura. “I was so glad when I could share joy and excitement with my colleagues who worked on semiconductor crystal growth for the development of the HEMT.”

Other Kyoto Prize Symposium events

Mimura’s presentation is part of the three-part Kyoto Prize Symposium hosted jointly by SDSU, University of California, San Diego, University of San Diego and Point Loma Nazarene University. In addition to Mimura, this year’s Kyoto Prize laureates are:

  • In Basic Sciences, plant physiologist Graham Farquhar, one of the world’s foremost authorities in the study of photosynthesis. His findings have played an indispensable role in climate science and offering new insights into the development of drought-resistant crops. Farquhar will speak at 3:30 p.m. on March 21 at UCSD.
  • In Arts and Philosophy, Richard Taruskin, a renowned musicologist, author and historian, has transformed contemporary perspectives on music using research methodologies and critical analyses that defy conventional paradigms. Taruskin will present at 10:30 a.m. on March 22 at USD.

About San Diego State University

San Diego State University is a major public research institution that provides transformative experiences, both inside and outside of the classroom, for its more than 36,000 students. The university offers bachelor’s degrees in 95 areas, master’s degrees in 78 areas and doctorates in 22 areas. Students participate in research, international experiences, sustainability and entrepreneurship initiatives, internships and mentoring, and a broad range of student life and leadership opportunities. The university’s rich campus life features opportunities for students to participate in, and engage with, the creative and performing arts, a Division I athletics program and the vibrant cultural life of the San Diego region. For more information, visit

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Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Announces STEM 2035

Beginning today, the Foundation is requesting applications to support afterschool and summer science, technology, engineering and math programs for youth in grades 6-12

Press Release – Buffalo, NY/Detroit, MI (March 19, 2018) – The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation (RCWJRF) today announced STEM 2035, an initiative through which the Foundation will grant funding and technical assistance to existing after school and summer STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs in Western New York and Southeast Michigan. The Foundation will award up to 20 total grants, each for up to $250,000 over a three-year span.

“The types of projects that kids encounter in afterschool STEM programs help build teamwork, problem solving, and communication skills, which are the kinds of skills that our fast-changing modern society needs,” said Amber Slichta, vice president of programs, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation. “To prepare the next generation of workforce, we not only need to close the gaps in STEM knowledge, but we also need to close the gaps that keep under-represented youth from pursuing their interests in STEM subjects.”

Through STEM 2035, the Foundation is looking to accomplish the following:

  • Increase the number of girls and minority youth participating in STEM programs and pursuing STEM in post-secondary education, training and careers.
  • Accelerate learning and collaboration among afterschool STEM providers in Western New York and Southeast Michigan to improve STEM outcomes for youth in those regions.
  • Support innovative ideas that better connect, inspire and prepare 6th-12th graders for STEM inpost-secondary education, training and careers.
  • Improve and sustain program quality by integrating best practices to better support youth’s STEM learning experiences.

The initiative is seeking programs that are ready and willing to try something new or make substantial improvements that spark interest, build confidence and create pathways in STEM.

“During the next 16-plus years of our Foundation’s spend down, we’ll witness some of the most rapid advances in science, technology, engineering and mathematics in history. We need to ensure that our future leaders are equipped to meet the modern challenges through 2035 and beyond,” Slichta added.

In addition to receiving funding for their programs, grantees will become part of the STEM 2035 peer learning community. Through this group, they will receive training and technical assistance, try new evaluation tools and quality improvement strategies, collaborate and learn together.

To help administer the RFP and oversee project management details, the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation has partnered with CCNY, Inc. Additional project partners include the PEAR Institute at Harvard, a subject matter expert in afterschool STEM programs, which will provide technical assistance, program assessments and support for grantees in the cohort; and Equal Measure, which has been brought on as the cohort evaluator.

Beginning today, March 19, through April 13, eligible organizations are encouraged to apply. Applications are due to CCNY, Inc. by 5 p.m. EST on April 13. Finalists will be notified in May to submit full proposals and selected grantees will be notified in July 2018. To learn more about STEM 2035 and the application process and eligibility, visit

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Does Your Child Understand The Value Of Money? Or Has Contactless Killed It?

An increasingly ‘cashless society’ is damaging how children and young people think about spending, research has warned – with children less likely to understand the value of money.

The survey found that:

  • 1 in 4 of children have used their parents’ bank cards
  • 1 in 5 children know their parents’ pin numbers
  • 1 in 3 parents are worried that their children think money is “instantly available”

Dr Arinola Araba, director of Be Moneywize, has now created a game to combat the problem.

She said it aims to teach children that goods are obtained through an exchange, and that money is not endless.

I think that it makes kids think that money is somewhere in the clouds, and they don’t have any idea of how it got there into the bank.

Sometimes, when you ask them: ‘Where do you get money from?’ they say: ‘We just got to the bank and put the card in’.


Meanwhile, 11-year-old Tami Oyelakin has attended an awareness workshop to teach her about the value of money.

“I use my mum’s card, I know the PIN, I think you just use it and don’t think it comes from anywhere,” she said.

“But I found out later on that it comes from somewhere, and it’s the money that your parents have earned.”

Dr Araba has now called for more education for children to grasp the concept of where money comes from, and what it means.

“We need more education, we need that coordination, we need that consciousness that we’re exchanging something for something,” she said.

“One of the players of this game said to his mum: ‘I want my money back’, after paying for something. But after playing the game he realised there was an exchange taking place, and we need more of that.”

Last updated Fri 16 Feb 2018

This article was originally published here.

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Leading Global Influencers Launch The Decade Of Women

Leading Global Influencers Launch The Decade Of Women And Revolutionary Campaign To Harness Frontier Technologies To Transform Women’s Lives Worldwide

Press Release – The Decade Of Women was launched with two powerful inaugural events in New York co-hosted by Thomson Reuters and 5th Element Group. The first, a private reception held at the United Nations, where a high level group of over 170 global leaders announced the elevation of the International Day of Women into the launch of The Decade Of Women solutions and action campaign – dedicated to Completing the Equity Revolution. Celebrated across eight billboards in Times Square and now live at, The Decade Of Women is bringing forth a #WeUniteWe Pledge as part of a decade long series of bold commitments to Celebrate, Unite and Exponentiate the progress of both women and men to get to complete the gender equity revolution, and to realize UN Sustainable Development Goal #5 to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls by 2030.

Opening the inaugural reception, Amir Dossal, President, Global Partnerships Forum, and HeForShe Champion for UN Women, said “The Decade Of Women is a critical and much needed initiative to ensure gender equality and women’s empowerment, which will go a long way to address the imbalances in society. It is incumbent upon men to step forward, and I am honored to be part of this important mission. Together, we can achieve SDG5!”

Patsy Doerr, Global Head, Corporate Responsibility and Inclusion, Thomson Reuters, followed in officially announcing that “Today, on the International Day of Women, we declare here forward a Decade Of Women.” She added, “I am immensely proud to be a part of The Decade Of Women campaign…Globally we must come together to ensure that women have equal access in order to build a sustainable future. Businesses must be at the forefront of this movement, ensuring that we are leveraging emerging technologies to achieve our objectives.”

The Launch was followed by an intensive “Quantum Impact and the Digital Frontier Collaboratory,” hosted at Thomson Reuters in Times Square session on Friday, March 9 attended by 130 leading influencers from Wall Street, the arts, science and technology, media and international development. The laser-sharp focus was on actionable, large-scale initiatives to harness the power of exponential new technology to advance The Decade Of Women and women’s financial independence.

Both events included mesmerizing performances by world-renowned violinist and composer, Tim Fain a passionate believer in equality and opportunity for women. Astronaut Ron Garan, Jr. spoke compellingly about The Decade Of Women as someone having seen the Earth from space and shared luminous images of the earth, emphasizing that we are all together on one planet traveling through the Universe, where all of the earth’s people have the same shared destiny.

Photo Credit: Ralph Reutimann

Vince Molinari, Co-Founder of Templum Inc. and Co-Founder and Principle in the 5th Element Group explained that “The exponential power of the new technologies of blockchain and security-based digital assets enable us to do what has never been done before – to create assets that value the undervalued, see what has not been seen, and to finally level the playing field in women’s economic leadership, and grow an economy based on truth, trust, transparency, love and innovation. Who better to lead such an economy than women?”

The campaign is distinct in focusing on levering the vital power of frontier technologies across blockchain and digital assets to at last achieve economic engagement and financial independence of all women. This will require the unlocking of capital to allow frontier technologies to scale.

J. Todd Morley, Founder and Chairman of G2 Investment Group, and Co-Founder of the investment firm Guggenheim Partners LLC, with over $300 billion assets under management, echoed the importance of the business and financial opportunity of the rise of women. Todd noted, “Investing in women – or gender lens investing is perhaps the greatest investment opportunity for the next decades…Let’s call it The Decade Of Women, to continue for decades to come. Why? We have developed new ‘filters’ to define what gender lens investing actually means. When creatively and thoughtfully applied to the world, you find a multi-trillion dollar, underfunded, unnoticed and misunderstood set of opportunities.”

Nathalie Molina Niño, Founder and CEO of BRAVA Investments, one of G2 Capital’s investees, and an investment firm dedicated to investing in outcomes instead of optics to deliver gender equity, emphasized “We’re pretty far from the last mile, and that’s why there’s urgency to use every tool and innovation available in the market to accelerate the growth of the most undervalued asset in the world, women! Investing in women is just smart business, with a higher upside than other crowded and frankly, now well-explored sectors. Women don’t need the world’s charity, the world needs women.”

Amber Nystrom, Co-Founder and Principle in 5th Element Group and Co-Host for the March 8th and 9th events, reminded that “The Decade Of Women follows in the footsteps of giants – men and women who put themselves on the line for the universal human right of gender equity worldwide. In 1975 the UN first declared a Decade for Women. In launching the Decade Of Women, we aim to now complete the work.” Speaking about her passionate personal reason for standing for The Decade Of Women, she quoted her mother as one of the co-founders of the modern midwifery movement in the U.S.: “When something becomes necessary for everyone, and not just for a few, then everything is possible.”

Dr. Jane Thomason, CEO, Abt Associates Australia, a leading expert in frontier technologies and the recipient on March 8th of The Decade Of Women first Quantum Impact Champion award, noted “For the first time in human history, we have the technological tools that will enable us to connect the bottom billion unbanked to the global economy, to provide digital identity to stateless people, to make micro grid solar power ubiquitous and through smart contracts, to direct benefits to women and girls.”

Decade Of Women information and resources, live stream videos, photos and the clarion call invitation to sign The Decade Of Women #WeUniteWe Public Pledge, can be found on: This site will serve as a global hub for connecting Decade Of Women commitments, community and action ongoing.

Among the partners who supported the launch of The Decade of Women, are: Thomson Reuters, 5th Element, Templum, Morningstar, Inc.,, BanQu, PVBLIC Foundation, SCN Corporate Connect, GoodXChange, Women of Iceland, Global Partnerships Forum, Global Thinkers Forum, GameChangers500, OneForAll and G2 Investment Group.

This article was originally published here.

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MIT’s 2018 Inclusive Innovation Challenge (IIC) Launches in North America; Over $1 Million to be Awarded to Organizations Reinventing the Future of Work

MIT IIC collaborates with Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation to celebrate and support North American entrepreneurs that are improving economic opportunity for workers. Registration now open for 2018 IIC.

Detroit selected as host of the IIC North America regional competition event, taking place in September

Press Release – CAMBRIDGE, MA, March 15, 2018 – Today, the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy (IDE) announced that it will expand the global reach of its Inclusive Innovation Challenge (IIC). Collaborating with the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation, the IIC will seek to identify and promote entrepreneurial organizations in North America that are using technology to improve economic opportunity for low and moderate income earners. Entrepreneurs operating primarily in North America and/or those that are based in the region can register today through May 29, 2018 at

“The grand challenge of our era is to use digital technologies to create not only prosperity, but shared prosperity,” says Erik Brynjolfsson, Director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy. “We can only address this Challenge by relying on the innovative genius of entrepreneurs from the global community.”

The MIT IIC was launched two years ago to recognize and celebrate organizations around the world that are using technology to solve a grand challenge of our time — to create not only prosperity, but shared prosperity by reinventing the future of work in the digital era. This year, the IIC has expanded to a global tournament model, collaborating with partners in five regions — North America, Latin America, Europe, Africa, and Asia. The North America region is defined by Canada and the United States.

Regional Judges will select 12 regional IIC winners to receive monetary prizes, recognition, and promotion at the IIC North America Celebration held in Detroit, Michigan this September. (Four Regional Champions will each win $20,000, and eight Finalists will each win $5,000.) Following this high-profile event, four North America Regional Winners will be selected to advance to the IIC Global Grand Prize Tournament & Celebration hosted at MIT in Cambridge, MA in October 2018. One million dollars in prize money will be awarded to four Global Grand Prize Winners, selected from Regional Winners from around the world.

“The Inclusive Innovation Challenge lies at the heart of our foundation’s mission, helping catalyze innovative solutions that improve the quality of life and future of work for the communities we serve,” said Lavea Brachman, vice president of programs, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation. “We are thrilled to further support the IIC by hosting the North America regional challenge event in Detroit, a city and community at the forefront of innovation and inclusive innovative solutions.”

In the first two years, over 1,500 inclusive innovation organizations responded to the IIC, illustrating the momentum of the growing global future of work movement. Over 230 Core Judges have reviewed applications and more than $2 million has been awarded to entrepreneurs and innovators who are demonstrating different ways to put powerful new technologies to work to improve people’s economic opportunity.

For-profit and nonprofit organizations of any size, age, or type and from any nation are encouraged to apply.

Eligible organizations are:

  • Using technology to reinvent work and create economic opportunity for people below the top rung of the economic ladder;
  • Demonstrating traction and impact-—They are beyond the “idea phase” and are enhancing shared prosperity today.

Organizations that do not yet meet the above criteria are encouraged to apply in the 2019 Challenge.

Based on data from the 2016 global Challenge, the MIT IIC determined that Inclusive Innovators accomplish their goals primarily in four ways. These four paths to increased shared prosperity make up the 2018 IIC Award Categories: Financial Inclusion; Income Growth & Job Creation; Skills Development & Opportunity Matching; and Technology Access.

“There is good reason to be hopeful about the future of work in North America. There are many ways for digital technology to benefit more people, and scalable solutions exist,” says David Verrill, Executive Director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy. “The IIC North American Challenge will help identify and promote those solutions working in the region today.”

The IIC is funded with support from; ISN®; The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation; Merck KGaA; Accenture Digital; Via Varejo; Joseph Eastin; Gustavo Pierini; and Gustavo Marini.

Join the Movement

The MIT IIC is dedicated to the promotion of sustainable, scalable global inclusive innovation. We engage U.S. and international media to report on solutions that can be harnessed today. We also connect winners with key ecosystem players and investors, while providing insights to government and policy makers. Smart capital investment and policies, we believe, can give us the best of both worlds: all the benefits that come from the technology breakthroughs of today and tomorrow and jobs that provide dignity and a good paycheck. We invite you to join us by embracing and supporting inclusive innovators and their equitable solutions to reinventing the future of work for all humans, not just an elite few.

The MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy (IDE) explores how people and businesses will work, interact, and prosper in an era of profound digital transformation. Working alone and with public and private sector partners, the IDE supports and conducts groundbreaking research in the areas of productivity and employment, big data, new digital business models, and social analytics. The IDE sponsors fellowships; hosts competitions, conferences, and roundtables; and supports other events that inspire new ideas. The IDE believes that challenges posed by the digital economy not only are solvable, but that technology will create new opportunities for people and businesses to thrive. @MIT_IDE

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation is a grantmaking organization dedicated primarily to sustained investment in the quality of life of the people of Southeast Michigan and Western New York. The two areas reflect Ralph C. Wilson, Jr.’s devotion to his hometown of Detroit and greater Buffalo, home of his Buffalo Bills franchise. Prior to his passing in 2014, Mr. Wilson requested that a significant share of his estate be used to continue a life-long generosity of spirit by funding the Foundation that bears his name. The Foundation has a grantmaking capacity of $1.2 billion over a 20-year period, which expires January 8, 2035. This structure is consistent with Mr. Wilson’s desire for the Foundation’s impact to be immediate, substantial, measurable and overseen by those who knew him best. For more information visit

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SDSU Professor Emeritus to Speak, Share Research during NASA Teleconference on Upcoming SpaceX Launch

Press Release – SAN DIEGO, Calif. (March 14, 2018) – San Diego State University Professor Emeritus of mechanical engineering Randall German will speak on a panel addressing research and technology aboard SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft. The panel, convened by NASA, will hold a media teleconference at 8:00 a.m. PST Monday, March 19, to discuss a number of science investigations and instruments launching in April to the International Space Station on the next SpaceX commercial resupply mission. Audio of the teleconference will stream live on NASA’s website.

To participate in the teleconference, media must contact Stephanie Schierholz at 202-358-1100 or by 5 p.m. Friday, March 16, for dial-in information.

Following an overview of the SpaceX Dragon’s technological capabilities, German will join a selection of speakers to discuss his research, which explores how zero gravity affects a process used to produce high-performance products from metal powders. This research could lead to improved manufacturing techniques and has potential as a way to perform in-space fabrication and repair.

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