Quick Figures (Spring 2017)
Since 2006, Big Ideas has received over 1,800 proposals, engaged more than 5,000 students from universities across the globe, and provided support for participants that have gone on to secure over $220 million in additional funding.
Eighty percent of winning projects in the past three years are still being implemented.
Fifty percent of ventures are formally registered (profit, non-profit, hybrid).
Past winners have gone on to to secure almost $220 million in funding from external sources, meaning for every dollar that Big Ideas invests in teams, they return $125.
Smartphone-enabled diagnostic toolkit to get better medical answers, faster.
Information technology platform to help agricultural producers and their partners collect, manage, and share data.
Smartphone-enabled information service to solve water problems affecting 3 billion people globally.
Back to the Roots
Develops sustainable home-based farming tools.
Technology platform that disseminates part-time work and income through mobile phones in 30 countries.
The Hep B Project
Education, screening, and vaccination initiative for low-income Asian and Pacific Islander populations of Alameda County, California.
Global Poverty & Practice is one of the most popular undergraduate minors on the UC Berkeley campus, and is being adapted for other campuses in the University of California system.
In just nine years, 692 UC Berkeley students have graduated from the minor, joining a new generation of innovators, social entrepreneurs, international development practitioners, and activists.
GPP students have participated in hands-on work in more than 70 countries including many regions of the United States.
GPP students come from a wide variety of academic fields—such as public health, mechanical engineering, political economy, integrative biology, psychology, economics, chemistry, bioengineering, anthropology, molecular biology, and social welfare.
The Development Impact Lab saw over 100 applied research projects tested and scaled in 30 countries.
DIL’s network includes 400 academic, industry, government, and social sector experts and more than 500 students from 16 disciplines and 10 fields.
DIL faculty members are interdisciplinary, representing the social sciences, engineering and computer sciences, and the natural sciences.
This “network-in-a-box” cell phone system, owned and operated by local communities, is targeted to the more than 1 billion people worldwide who live beyond the reach of cellular networks. The first deployment in rural Papua, Indonesia in February 2013 gave 1,500 people cellular coverage and enabled 500,000 communications.
This village-scale solar microgrid has the potential to bring electricity to the 1.2 billion people who currently lack access. Because past efforts to electrify rural communities have been plagued by energy theft, unaffordable connection costs, intermittent supply, and poor maintenance, the project uses smart meters and collects comprehensive household survey data before and after microgrid deployment.
An award-winning nonprofit that designs portable, cost-effective Solar Suitcases that power critical lighting, mobile communication devices, and medical devices in low-resource areas without reliable electricity. Solar Suitcases have been deployed at hundreds of clinics throughout Africa, Central America, the Caribbean, and Asia.