The Genesis Generation Challenge, the $1 million competition led by the Genesis Prize Foundation and created with funding from its first laureate, Michael R. Bloomberg, launches today worldwide. The competition, which aims to identify and seed money for innovative projects guided by Jewish values to address the world's pressing issues, will award 10 teams of change agents $100,000 USD each. Winners will be selected by an esteemed panel of judges and announced in the first quarter of 2015.
The Genesis Generation Challenge will turn passion into reality for 10 winning teams connecting them to mentors and opportunities to convene and learn from one another. Benefits exist even for those teams that do not win; they will become part of an active network of forward thinking and connected individuals from whom they can receive feedback and grow their ideas.
All competitors must register for the competition through www.Genesis-Generation.org between August 1st – September 30th. Team leaders must be between 20-36 years of age and other members must be 18 or older.
Each team that completes an application will receive detailed feedback from a panel of highly credible judges. To ensure fairness, five judges will score each application, and we will statistically normalize the review process, to ensure a level playing field for everyone. Judges' scores and comments will be published, so that teams can receive valuable feedback. Potential competitors can learn more about the scoring tool that each judge will use, even before they have registered or formed a team.
All approved submissions are then distributed to an international expert evaluation Panel, that will review and score applications against four specific traits: intentional, collaborative, feasible, and scalable. The 15 applications receiving the highest scores will be passed to the Selection Committee, comprised of approximately five individuals who will select the winners.
"Competitions can provide the incentives and framework to help innovative ideas surface, so we created the Genesis Generation competition to empower young people who want to make the world a better place," said Michael R. Bloomberg. "The competition will spur collaboration across borders and regions, and it will encourage young people to find new and better ways to tackle our most pressing challenges."
Michael R. Bloomberg first announced his intent to donate his $1 million Genesis Prize on May 22 in Israel, during the Genesis Prize Award Ceremony where he was lauded for his life achievements in business, civil service and philanthropy.
Judges announced to date include: Dan Shechtman, Nobel Prize Laureate (Israel); Marjorie B. Tiven, Director of Global Cities, Inc. (USA); Jill Smith, President of Jewish Foundation for Education of Women (USA); Sana Britavsky, Deputy CEO, Chief Content Officer, Genesis Philanthropy Group (Israel); Roberta Kaplan, Partner, Paul Weiss (USA); David Hatchwell Altaras, President of Excem Group (Spain); Noam Lautman, Chairman, Delta Galil (Israel); Lisa Eisen, National Director for the Schusterman Family Foundation (USA); Rachel Haot, Chief Digital Officer and Deputy Secretary of Technology for New York State (USA); and Rachel Cohen Gerrol, Co-founder and Curator, Nexus Youth Summit (USA).
"We are thrilled to launch the competition," commented Wayne L. Firestone, President of the Genesis Prize Foundation. "We believe in young adults' ability to bring about solutions for the world's most pressing problems and use their unique insight to affect change across the globe."
Michael R. Bloomberg will attend an international launch event in New York City on August 12. The event will host over 100 social entrepreneurs and allow potential competitors an opportunity to learn more about the competition and meet the judges. The following day, August 13, the Genesis Prize Foundation will host an Idea Accelerator in Washington DC for those interested in submitting applications.
A complete description of the criteria for submission, rules, application, and scoring mechanism is available at www.Genesis-Generation.org.