Global Health & Innovation Conference at Yale

The Global Health and Innovation Conference at Yale

The Global Health and Innovation Conference at Yale

For those interested in presenting, Unite for Sight’s conference at Yale is currently accepting social enterprise pitch abstracts for presentation at the conference.  The registration rate increases after December.

Global Health & Innovation Conference 2013
Presented by Unite For Sight, 10th Annual Conference
Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
Saturday, April 13 – Sunday, April 14, 2013

http://www.uniteforsight.org/conference

According to the organizers, The Global Health & Innovation Conference is “the world’s largest global health conference and social entrepreneurship conference.  This must-attend, thought-leading conference annually convenes 2,200 leaders, changemakers, students, and professionals from all fields of global health, international development, and social entrepreneurship.”  Register here.

Interested in presenting at the conference? Submit a social enterprise pitch abstract for consideration.

They have a great lineup of speakers, including a lot of stalwarts. Check out their lineup here.

Voronoi Bookshelf, Rocking Chair, and Bug Hotel: A combination of design, engineering and technology

I’m always fascinated by innovative design that is useful, beautiful, and blends science/tech with art in a very unique way.

Recently, I came across a series of projects inspired by the Voronoi algorithm.

This fascinating project started by Stanford Neurobiologist and artist, Alan Rorie, is now on Kickstarter and looks like a winner to me. Building upon the science algorithm, the founder tries beautifully blend science and art to design unique bookcases for customers. Check it out below or here:

 

I figured the algorithm could be used to design more than just bookshelves, and found this rocking chair by graduate student/designer, David Phillips:

Beautiful rocking chair designed by David Phillips (source: davidphillips.us)

But that’s not enough. I also found a Voronoi bug hotel…in response to a competition to build a 5-star hotel for bugs (!!). The story behind that is here:

The five-star bug hotel from Arup Associates. (source: Good.is)

 

GE’s Innovation Challenge: $600k to make flying and hospitals more efficient

Have an idea to make flying or hospitals more efficient?? Well, submit your idea to GE for almost $600k in prizes.

“The Industrial Internet. The Internet of Things. What does it all mean?

 

In a nutshell, it’s internet-connected devices collecting data and communicating to make industries smarter. This data is then used to anticipate and avoid problems, instead of fixing things after the fact.

 

As we continue to look for different ways to analyze data we need, we’re looking for people who know how to analyze and interpret data. Like finding an algorithm that can reduce air travel delays, or a solution to streamline a patient’s experience in the hospital.

 

To get started, choose your quest. Or, to learn more, watch the intro videos for the Flight Quest and the Hospital Quest.

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GE’s Fascinating Innovation Barometer

What are the most important factors to improve innovation in a country??

GE has come up with a fascinating metric. They surveyed executives around the world regarding their views on innovation, and mapped out the data in a way that allows the viewer to study the relationships between different data topics, over geography and time. You can also compare the data they got from 2011 and 2012.

Check it out here:

 

Rounding up the week on Education: Sweden’s Newest School with Classroom

 

Who wouldn’t want to go to a school like this??

No doubt you’ve heard about this already, if you have been trawling the internet. If not, read on…

 

From Architizer:

The young—and the young at heart—have a seemingly infinite capacity to project fantasies unto ordinary spaces. It is this kernel of wide-eyed creativity that carries on into adulthood, fighting to stay alive and to push us to keep imagining new and better worlds. Swedish educators seem to have had this in mind when they commissioned the architects at Rosan Bosch to build a wholly original kind of schoolhouse. The Swedish Free School Organization Vittra has been pioneering a new kind of pedagogical space, specifically one without walls. Gone are the classrooms and their rigid alignment of desks, and in their place emerges a colorful, seamless landscape of abstractly themed learning environments.

Also read about the following alternative schools:

John Hardy’s Green School

African Leadership Academy

 

 

Struggling to Startup Your Own Social Enterprise?? Here’s a great resource…

Need a blueprint for starting a social enterprise?? Look no further!

Starting a social enterprise is not easy; some might argue that because the field is so “new”, fewer resources mean that its harder than a regular startup.

So if you are wondering how to do it and are struggling, there is a resource that might be perfect for you…

Echoing Green Alumnus, TED Senior Fellow, MIT graduate, inventor, tinkerer, and founder of Social Tech Enterprise AIDG, Peter Haas is putting together a great webinar on “How to Set Up your Own Social Enterprise“. The workshop is aimed at teaching novices tools to be successful in the field of social enterprise.

“Are you frustrated trying to start your social enterprise. Struggling with sustainability, financial planning, impact reporting? This webinar is an overview of running a social enterprise. It takes from the experiences of some of the lead social entrepreneurs of our day to give you guidance on lessons learned and practical tools to help you overcome your obstacles. It will save you hours of work and research. Don’t reinvent the wheel, leverage some of the best practices of some of the best social entrepreneurs in the world today.”

 

To register, go here.

 

AWESOME FREE class from STAR Development Economists: 14.73x The Challenges of Global Poverty

Star Development Economists Banerjee and Duflo to jointly teach a free class on Global Poverty

MIT’s EdX is offering an awesome MUST-register class by JPAL geniuses, Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo to teach an intro class on Global Poverty.

Duflo and Banerjee are the founders of the Jameel Poverty Action Lab (JPAL), behind the most interesting and fascinating new research on poverty issues in the Developing World, and are having a significant impact on international aid and development interventions.

Their courses are generally hard to get into (I can personally attest to this), and expensive. But now you can get it for free. Definitely check it out!

Further reading: Tworque/JPAL

Free Online Education is Leveling the Playing Field for Economically Challenged Communities

 

What if these women were watching a lecture by a professor from MIT or Harvard?? Its now a reality…

Now that opensource thinking has proliferated the technology space, a whole slew of products have emerged. Now all you need is an internet connection of some sort, a pair headphones and a phone with video capability and suddenly a person from Somalia or an innercity kid from Nairobi or South Central Los Angeles can be educated  in the same class by a professor from Harvard.

Several years ago, MIT had decided to put all their courses up for free on something called OpenCourseware (OCW). I didn’t particularly enjoy the material on there, but I soon realized I was in the minority. During my travels, I came across several people from around the world, particularly parts where a lack of financial resources and good universities abounds, who had successfully used the material and even learned it better than me.

Since then, several others have emerged that can run the gamut of education from grade school (the Khan Academy, TED-Ed) to university education (EdX, the new MIT-Harvard initiative to replace OCW,  Coursera from Stanford, Udacity), and beyond (Udemy).

I’m slowly wading my way through all the different programs, and trying to figure out what works for me. But its super cool that finally the developing world has almost equal access to anyone else anywhere else. Hurrah to the future of education. Now if we can just get more women access to this, and we will see the world change for the better.

Get your genome decoded. Take control of your health risks! (23&Me has a $99 deal for a limited time!)

The 23andMe Spit Kit. Now available for $99!

For the longest time I didn’t have a clue why personal genome decoding was such a big deal. Yeah, yeah…laugh all you want, but in the grander scheme of things that are important to me, and the places where I have worked, getting your next meal, finding clean water, and surviving AIDS were issues that surrounded the people I worked with. I could’ve cared less that I didn’t have my genome tested.

Recently, I had the rare chance to do free genetics testing at 23andMe. So I thought…Why not?? The whole process was pretty easy and well designed. Once you pay, you get a small box in the mail that contains all the instructions. It took me all of 15 mins to read the pamphlet, scrub my cheek, spit in the enclosed tube, register online, and send off my DNA to the lab. 15 mins…swear!

Two days later, the lab emailed to say that they got my sample, and two weeks later, they emailed to say that I got my results.

I logged in and BAM, I had my results. It was interesting, to say the least…from my spit, they had figured out my eye color, skin color, whether I was lactose intolerant, what disease and carrier disease risks I had. With new genetic tests, 23andMe updates your report and cites the necessary literature regularly. I now know my Parkinsons, Cancer and Alzheimer’s risks. Everything is pretty well explained, and I learned more about my health than I realized I could through this medium.

How accurate it is, depends on how much you believe in science. And it is a game of odds (in that they will tell you the odds of you getting any particular disease is some percentage). So depending on how much of a gambler you are, you can bet on the side that works for you. But the good thing is that its made me more aware and vigilant about specific health concerns. Head here to know how it is relevant and how the whole testing works.

Normally, the test costs $300, but they have it on special for $99. A great Xmas gift if you asked me. Head to www.23andme.com for more information.