Why a Humanitarian Grand Challenge?

Grand Challenges bring global attention and resources to specific, well-defined international problems and promote innovative approaches to solving them. Grand Challenges are about more than sourcing new promising innovations--they are about scaling the solutions that are proven to work. Achieving this requires a holistic approach where we address critical barriers to market growth and expansion.

Creating Hope in Conflict: A Humanitarian Grand Challenge seeks life-saving or life-improving innovations to help the most vulnerable and hardest-to-reach people impacted by humanitarian crises caused by conflict. These innovations will involve a connection to the private sector and input from affected communities in order to provide, supply, or locally generate safe drinking water and sanitation, energy, life-saving information, or health supplies and services to help conflict-affected people.

Key Focus Areas

  1. Safe Water and Sanitation: We are looking for bold ideas, technologies, processes and approaches that enable rapid provision of safe water and safe disposal of waste and sewage in the most vulnerable households and/or enable implementers to rapidly scale up programs.
  2. Energy: We are looking for bold ideas to generate energy. We are particularly interested in alternative energy solutions that are possible to set up and maintain in conflict situations, and that power life-saving and life-improving services such as health, information, water and sanitation, and education.
  3. Life-Saving Information: We are looking for bold ideas that use and improve access to information and data to increase the impact of humanitarian assistance at the local level as well as enable more effective connections between affected populations and humanitarian actors.
  4. Health Products and Services: We are looking for bold ideas that enable non-experts  to provide quality care; empower skilled staff who choose to work in conflict zones; allow faster or less costly importation and distribution of quality essential health supplies in conflict zones; and enable affected communities to manufacture necessary high quality and safe supplies, or sterilize and reuse them.

Partners

HGC Partner Logos

Creating Hope in Conflict: A Humanitarian Grand Challenge is a partnership of the U.S. Agency for International Development, the UK Department for International Development (DFID), and Grand Challenges Canada. Together, we seek life-saving or life-improving innovations to help the most vulnerable and hardest-to-reach people impacted by humanitarian crises caused by conflict.

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is the world's premier international development agency and a catalytic actor driving development results. USAID's work advances U.S. national security and economic prosperity, demonstrates American generosity, and promotes a path to recipient self-reliance and resilience.

The Department for International Development (DFID) leads the UK’s work to end extreme poverty. We are tackling the global challenges of our time including poverty and disease, mass migration, insecurity and conflict. Our work is building a safer, healthier, more prosperous world for people in developing countries and in the UK too.

Grand Challenges Canada is dedicated to supporting Bold Ideas with Big Impact®. Funded by the Government of Canada and other partners, Grand Challenges Canada funds innovators in low- and middle-income countries and Canada. The bold ideas Grand Challenges Canada supports integrate science and technology, social and business innovation – known as Integrated Innovation®. One of the largest impact-first investors in Canada, and with a feminist investment approach, Grand Challenges Canada has supported a pipeline of over 800 innovations in more than 80 countries. Grand Challenges Canada estimates that these innovations have the potential to save up to 1 million lives and improve up to 28 million lives by 2030.

BECOME A PARTNER

The Humanitarian Grand Challenge represents a multi-governmental partnership aimed at addressing the immediate needs of the world’s most vulnerable and underserved populations - people affected by conflict. To reach our goal, we seek connections and strategic relationships with humanitarian actors, innovators and the private sector that will help identify, promote, and scale up groundbreaking solutions that save and improve lives in complex emergency situations. Please email us to get in touch about partnership opportunities: info@humanitariangrandchallenge.org.