Social Entrepreneurship workshop and competition at IIT-Madras

The India chapter of Asia-Pacific Student Entrepreneurship Society (ASES-India) operating out of IIT-Madras is set to conduct workshops running up to a competition in which the best social business plan will be rewarded. Times of India reports,

Participants must submit executive summaries of their business plans by January 25 after which around 15 to 20 teams will be short-listed and mentored.

Results of the first round will be declared on February 1 and the formal mentoring including development of prototypes of short-listed projects will commence on February 15. In all five awards will be given.[Source:

The website created for the competition, named Genesis, indicates that while prizes in the competition bring for good publicity for the winning ideas, the workshops will offer valuable lessons to learn to all the participants, who may also stand to gain from their interaction with people from IIT, Rural Innovations Network, Ashoka, Indian Angel Network, TiE – the partners of ASES-India for this competition.

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[TC-I Call to Action]: SEED Awards for Sustainable Development

InfoDev helps announce the SEED Awards for Entrepreneurship in Sustainable Development, an award recognizing partnerships in developing countries that are working on environmental and social issues.   The approach to the award is interesting, however, because winners do not receive the normal cash prize; instead, they will receive something that many enterprises need: support services, catered for the specific need.

Note that eligibility means that at least three partner organizations are involved – a great way to encourage collaboration for social impact.

The SEED Awards for Entrepreneurship in Sustainable Development is an annual international competition, designed to support locally-led, innovative, entrepreneurial partnerships in developing countries, which have the potential to make real improvements in poverty eradication and environmental sustainability.

The SEED Initiative assists young and promising initiatives in strengthening and scaling up the impact of their activities. This is not a cash award. Instead, a comprehensive package of tailor-made support services, with a value of US$25,000, will be provided to Winners.

Applications will be available online soon, so be sure to keep your eye on the SEED website.

[TC-I Call to Action]: Financial Solutions for Social Change

Ashoka Changemakers and Citi are partnering “in the search for innovative and cutting-edge methods that allow financial security to become a reality for everyone” by offering an online challenge titled “Banking on Social Change – Seeking Financial Solutions for All.”

The competition is designed to reach the world’s entrepreneurs and challenge them to use their substantial talents and commitment to providing financial services for all. The objective is to channel the collective energy of entrepreneurial ideas and skills as a means for creating economic and social change worldwide.

Nominations are due by September 26, 2008, and innovators must submit their entries by October 1, 2008. As an incentive to submit early, entries received before August 15 will be eligible to win an early entry prize of a camcorder and digital camera worth US$1,000.

Vote in the Global Water Challenge

The Global Water Challenge, a competition put on by Ashoka Changemakers, is taking votes right now on their selected finalists. Titled “Tapping Local Innovation: Unclogging the Water and Sanitation Crisis,” voting for the projects is open until Sunday, May 11.

Ashoka’s Changemakers and Global Water Challenge have partnered to open a worldwide search for ideas and projects that, when scaled-up, have the potential to transform the provision of sanitation and water.

We have covered the lack of access to safe drinking water in India before. There are three finalists out of nine from India – Naandi Foundation, Swayam Shikshan Prayog, and Himanshu Parikh Consulting Engineers. This is an issue that affects many countries, and the project finalists are working on some innovative approaches, from community based initiatives to leveraging technology to working on mechanisms that encourage behavioral change.

Three winners will receive $5000 for their projects. Go here to cast your vote.

Piramal Prize — Help Democratize Healthcare

Anand Shah, the founder of Indicorps, along with the Ajay G. Piramal Foundation has established the  Piramal Prize whose goal is to

encourage and support bold entrepreneurial ideas which have a profound impact on access to higher standards of health for India’s rural and marginalized urban communities. The award recognizes high-impact, scalable business models that propose innovative solutions which directly or indirectly address India’s healthcare crisis. Entries may include, but are not limited to, innovations in service delivery, technology applications, health-related products, or mechanisms to address public health necessities such as potable water.

Initial steps for entry can be found here.