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Generate Solutions for your Community: Join the Global Virtual Solveathon!

On March 1, MIT Solve launched its 2021 Global Challenges in:

    • Resilient Ecosystems
    • Digital Inclusion
    • Health Security & Pandemics
    • Equitable Classrooms

And our first US-based Challenge in:

  • Antiracist Technology in the US

Tackling these complex Challenges will require diverse skill sets and backgrounds. In some communities, people have already developed solutions out of necessity. In others, creative, passionate people are ready to roll up their sleeves and build new ones. 

Join the movement. The Challenges are open now through June 16, 2021. 

Do you have entrepreneurs in your community with transformative ideas? We invite you to join our Global Virtual Solveathon on either May 13 or 14 to help your community create, refine, and submit impactful solutions to Solve’s Global Challenges. 

What is a Solveathon? 

A Solveathon is a facilitated design-thinking workshop to generate and refine solutions, whether from scratch or from existing startups. Each Solveathon has a flexible format rooted in human-centered design. It’s a space to form and reshape ideas, evaluate and iterate on designs, experiment and collaborate, and make new friends and professional contacts.

Last year, solution applications to our 2020 Global Challenges came from 135 countries around the world. Now we’re looking to generate and find more of the best ideas and innovations from around the world to solve this year’s Challenges, and we invite you to help us discover them.

What happened at the 2020 Global Virtual Solveathon? 

Last year we had thirteen groups and facilitators from thirteen different countries recruit over 200 participants from Greece to Nigeria to Sri Lanka to the Caribbean. Over two days we held two Solveathon workshops in which participants generated solutions to our Global Challenges. 

Alfanar in Lebanon organized three different teams all focused on solving for our Learning for Girls and Women Challenge. One of their solutions was called Shariki, “a platform to link women to job opportunities across Lebanon while promoting gender equality awareness and developing their diverse skils.” Alfanar’s Lebanon Country Director Michelle Mouracade summed up the opportunity perfectly, “It was really a great event with a great atmosphere! Everyone on our end was very happy to be a part of it and we felt really proud that our tiny country represented so many of the participants. We hope that a few of the team members will be applying to the Challenge!”

Blockchain Mérida similarly joined the event recruiting several teams from across nonprofits and universities in Mexico. Their teams were organized by teacher and independent consultant, Alfonso Govela Thomae, “It was an extraordinary opportunity. Three out of our four Teams were able to submit their solution to Solve. We look forward to continue working with MIT Solve, and to promote new Communities of Solver teams in the Yucatan Peninsula.”

What do I need to host?

Any organization can volunteer to host a Solveathon, regardless of location, demographics, or internet connection (although a strong internet connection really helps in this virtual world!). Solve’s open innovation platform will accept submissions until June 16, 2021. Solveathon workshops expand our reach, helping us find phenomenal people whose ideas might not otherwise become widely available. 

You’ll need:

  • A Facilitator to keep participants on track and keep the room active. Facilitators help maximize creativity and get groups unstuck.

  • A Team of six to ten passionate and creative people. 

  • Content, schedule, and best practices from Solve. We do this part for you! We’ll provide a toolkit and digital training that covers different event lengths, audiences, facilitator tips and tricks, and much more.

How do I sign up?

A Solveathon is free to host and must be free to attend for your team. We encourage hosts from anywhere in the world to apply: there are great ideas everywhere, and Solve’s mission is to find them, make them visible, and get them the resources they need to have an (even bigger) impact.

If you would like to join the Global Virtual Solveathon, please fill out this form. Or if you would like to have a Solve staff member facilitate a Solveathon with you please, reach out here.

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