Currently 10% of the world’s population does not have access to ‘improved’ water resources, nearly 20% are without access to energy, and almost 35% lack access to improved sanitation.
These gaps are due to challenges such as last mile distribution, operation and maintenance capabilities and costs, and payment ability and collection. Furthermore, increasing urbanisation, ageing infrastructure, and lack of investment are resulting in millions of people, who are considered to have access, living with increasingly less reliable services.
The GSMA’s Mobile for Development Utilities programme is focused on looking at how mobile technology can be used to facilitate access to affordable and reliable energy, water and sanitation, which are vital for health and wellbeing, and can also help reduce poverty and drive economic growth.
A lack of access to such services often disproportionately impacts the economic opportunities, health and safety of girls and women. M4D Utilities seeks to identify and support innovative mobile-enabled solutions that will improve the lives of many, but especially this group of society.
To combat this issue, the GSMA Mobile for Development Utilities programme is proud to announce a $5 million Innovation Fund for the GSMA mWASH Grants, supported by DFID, to:
– Accelerate efforts using mobile technology to enable improved or increased access to energy, water and/or sanitation services for underserved communities
– Identify innovative business models that can support mobile innovations for energy, water and sanitation services
– Generate knowledge about the application of mobile enabled services which can be shared with the development community and mobile industry
– Stimulate productive partnerships between mobile operators/tower companies and energy providers, water providers, sanitation service providers, utilities, NGOs, entrepreneurs and academics to achieve these objectives at scale
Sounds cool, eh? Then be quick to apply to the two stage application process. Concept notes due December 7th, 2014