Today marks the 1st day of the first ever 2-day Global Innovation Summit for Youth and Children, hosted by the United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Finland and co-organised in partnerships with Slush, a annual tech event held in Finland where the biggest startups and venture capitalists meet and showcase or invest in future technology.
The agenda of the summit will be to discuss 2 important questions:
- How do we get important products to a billion people?
- Which opportunities from the technology or private sector will have the biggest impact on children in the next 5 years?
The summit will bring together influencers in innovation that have great ideas and the people with the power to make sure these innovations are carried out in regions that need them the most.
“We are happy to host this event in Helsinki,” said Lenita Toivakka, Finnish Minister for Foreign Trade and Development. “Finland is repeatedly listed as one of the world’s most innovative economies. We strongly believe that in order to find solutions to the pressing problems children are facing and to implement the global sustainable development agenda we need new ways of thinking and doing development cooperation, increased investments in innovation, and maybe most importantly, improved commitment to partnerships in doing so.”
Some of the participants in the summit include representatives from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Finnair, Finnfund, Finnpartnership, Finpro, Global Catalysts Partners, Global Innovation Fund, IFRC, ITU, Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture of Namibia, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, National Youth Institute, Nordic Development Fund (NDF), NRDC, Oxfam, Partners for Sustainable Development, Philips, Plan International, Reboot, Rlabs, Queensland University of Technology, Save the Children, Sida, SOS Children’s Villages International, Tanzict, Tekes, Telia Sonera, Tsinghua University, UNDP, UNICEF, UNAIDS, UN OCHA, United Nations Population Fund, Union Square Ventures, University of Nairobi, US Fund for UNICEF, World Health Organisation, World Vision Finland, and Y combinator.
According to the official UNICEF program ‘the first day will be about jobs and automation, ubiquitous connectivity, personal and planetary health, digital- and crypto-currency, financing (venture vs. crowd) and other emerging market areas where there is a clear overlap between private sector interests and the needs of the world’s most vulnerable populations’.
The second day ‘will bring together experts who have scaled ideas into reality and answer questions about what has helped and hindered product expansion, how success can be measured (capital vs. community) and what happens between a million and a billion users’.
Look out for the next TechTrends blog about all that will be discussed at the Global Innovation Summit for Youth and Children after the event and follow us on twitter @techtrends_zm for more info, or check out the UNICEF website here for more.