Essay contest announcement: Global Social Entrepreneurship Competition
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The Global Social Entrepreneurship Competition (GSEC): “engages creative minds around the world to encourage bolder and less conventional business solutions to global poverty.
“Students from around the world—and across fields of study—are invited to find innovative, commercially-sustainable business solutions to problems of poverty in the developing world. GSEC plans are judged on the quality of life in the developing world, financial sustainability, and implementation feasibility.
“From affordable, nutritious meals for slum dwellers in Mumbai, to mobile wind turbines in Kazakhstan, to solar oven-powered water purification systems in Tanzania, GSEC business plans demonstrate the power of business to create sustainable, positive change to some of the world’s most challenging social problems.
“Each year, the Global Business Center brings the world to University of Washington: a select group of interdisciplinary teams are invited to Seattle to participate in GSEC Week at the UW Foster School of Business. Teams attend exclusive company visits, receive feedback on their presentation and pitch their business ideas to judges as they compete for prize money.
GSEC Entry and Competition Criteria
To compete in GSEC, student teams need to create an innovative social business plan that seeks to alleviate a problem of poverty in the developing world. GSEC business plans must clearly demonstrate the Social Return on Investment (SROI) in addition to the financial return on investment.* In addition to SROI, GSEC business plans must detail the social impact of their business idea. Please refer to the GSEC Submission Requirements and Resources for application and business plan criteria.
GSEC plans are judged on three criteria: (1) effect on the quality of life and poverty alleviation in the developing world, (2) financial sustainability; (3) feasibility of implementation. To learn what former GSEC participants have proposed, visit the GSEC business plans section.
GSEC is open to students from any academic institution worldwide. Teams may be comprised of students from difference disciplines and institutions, and multi-disciplinary teams are highly encouraged. Both graduate and undergraduate students are eligible. Looking for team members? Become a fan of GSEC on Facebook and post on the Discussions page to recruit a team or team members.
How to Apply
GSEC applications will be accepted August 03-Novemeber 11, 2009. Before applying, please review the GSEC rules and GSEC Submission Requirements.
To apply, GSEC student teams must complete both of the following by 11/11/09:
1) Submit an executive summary of your team’s business plan via email to gsec(at)u.washington.edu. Executive summaries must adhere to the GSEC executive summary requirements, detailed in the GSEC Submission Requirements.
2) Complete the online application.
Both the executive summary and the online registration must be received by November 11, 2009, 11:00 PM, Pacific Standard Time. Only one application per team.
Review and Selection Process
GSEC applications go through two rounds of reviews between November-December 2009 to determine the semi-finalist GSEC teams. Semi-finalist teams are selected in mid-December and are invited to attend GSEC Week, March 1-5, 2010 at the University of Washington (UW) in Seattle, WA.
Once semi-finalist teams are confirmed, they are paired and work with mentors starting December 2009 to develop the full business plan. GSEC teams are required to submit a full business plan draft January 19, 2010 and the final full business plan February 16, 2010. GSEC business plans must conform to the business plan format as detailed in the GSEC Submission Requirements.
During GSEC Week, semi-finalist teams will compete for GSEC prizes totaling up to $17,000 US.** SROI includes the social good of improved health and, in addition to the GSEC grand prize, two prizes in global health will be offered. Please refer to the GSEC global health plan guidelines for more information.