Application Deadline March 20, 2015
How to Apply: Upload an Executive Summary and 90 second promotional video to the GIST Tech-I website
General Criteria : An idea or start-up science and technology product, research, or service with commercial potential in the areas of Agriculture, Energy, Health, or Information Communication Technology (ICT)
Basic Eligibility : Scientists, entrepreneurs, researchers, or innovators who are citizens of a GIST eligible country in sub-Saharan Africa, Eurasia, the Middle East, North Africa and the Mediterranean, or Latin America and the Caribbean and are not permanent residents or citizens of the U.S.
Awards: Mentorship Individual Grant Awards up to $15,000 USDAAAS Memberships
Are you a scientist? An entrepreneur? A researcher? An innovator? A student? Are you just someone who has a great idea or startup company and are looking to change the world? Whoever you are, if you have a great idea then Tech-I is for you!
The Tech-I competition is open to everyone between the ages of 18 to 40 years old who has either an idea or a startup in the sectors of agriculture, energy, healthcare, or information communication technology (ICT). Your idea or startup can be an invention, a product, a service, an app, any combination of these, or something entirely unique.
The Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) initiative operates at the intersection of science and technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship to empower individual scientists and innovators and to strengthen entrepreneurial ecosystems.
GIST equips young men and women around the world with the skills they need to become successful entrepreneurs and leaders who turn ideas into new ventures that transform their communities. GIST identifies and supports promising young entrepreneurs through competitions, skills development, networking, and interactive mentorship.
The GIST Technology Idea (Tech-I) competition is an annual competition for science and technology entrepreneurs from around the world.
- Public voting will determine the top thirty finalists who will attend the Tech-I finals at the 2015 Global Entrepreneurship Summit in sub-Saharan Africa (exact location to be confirmed).
- During this internationally prestigious event, these amazing up-and-coming scientists and entrepreneurs will receive intensive skills training, mentorship, and networking access to global leaders in their fields. All finalists will receive up to 3 months mentoring following the finals. In addition, finalists will also compete for funding totaling $70,000.
- GIST Tech-I winners, selected by experts at the GES, win mini-grants, and receive one-on-one mentorship and training.
The GIST initiative is led by the U.S. Department of State. The Tech-I Competition of the GIST initiative is implemented by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
The Tech-I Competition is designed to encourage and support technology and science entrepreneurs to launch and/or grow a company through:
- Training and mentorship with successful entrepreneurs, scientists, angel investors, and venture capitalists;
- Networking opportunities; and
- Access to capital.
Before you apply, you should first confirm that you are eligible to compete. The basic eligibility requirements are that:
- You must be a citizen of a GIST eligible country; and
- You must be between the ages of 18-40 years old on March 20, 2015.
Once you have established that you are eligible to apply, you will next need to get together a few promotional materials for your application including:
- An Executive Summary The Executive Summary narrative must be completed online in the application tool, must not exceed 750 words, and must be written in English. It should include the information outlined in the Program Announcement which includes significance of idea, scientific and technical merit, and commercial potential. Further details can be found here; and
- A 90 Second Promotional Video Each application must include a 90 second promotional video, which should highlight the value and purpose of the product or service to customers. The video must be presented by the applicant in English or include English subtitles. The video should focus on the concept, product, or service being promoted and its potential market value.This is your opportunity to really sell your idea so your video should be both engaging and creative. Further advice can be found here. Videos from last year’s startup and idea stage winners are also available to use as examples.
During the application, you will be asked several questions including whether you are submitting an Idea or Startup science and technology product, research, or service. The following criteria should be applied to help you to decide which category you fit in:
Idea Stage Application
- The entrepreneur has research or a technology with commercialization potential and is willing to start a business.
- The entrepreneur has started thinking about the qualifications of the management team necessary to execute the idea.
- The entrepreneur has started to identify advisors.
- The entrepreneur has started market research.
Startup Stage Application
- Venture is for-profit and less than three years old from date of launching startup.
- Product or service is currently in a testing or pilot stage and not yet available for commercial release.
- Venture is either self-funded (revenue) or has external financing (either from public or private sources).
For More Information: