Past Challenges

Pilots (All SDGs)

The first two pilot editions of the O17 challenge invited a wide range of participants to tackle SDG-related issues, with the only requirement of using crowdsourcing and existing Open Data. In total, 18 participants and 7 projects were selected, including, among others, crowd mapping sexual violence in India, monitoring the use of water resources in Nigeria, tracking the extent of poverty in Mexico’s slums and putting rural Tanzania on the map. (2015 and 2016)

Sustainable Cities (SDG 11)

In the summer of 2016 the O17 challenge was inspired by the upcoming UN Habitat III cconference (Quito, Ecuador). In the end, 12 participants and 6 projects were selected. The participants included students, NGOs and individual citizens. Projects included mapping food markets as potential hotspots for epidemics, tracking stages of reconstruction in Gaza, and providing cheap and sustainable clean water in Nigeria. The projects were featured in a dedicated public exhibition at the UN Habitat III conference, which was visited by UN delegates and the local public.

What should the job of the future look like? (SDG 8)

The Challenge was organized in 2016 in collaboration with the Alliance4YOUth, a pan-European business initiative to promote youth employment. The theme of the challenge was SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth. 100 students participated from all over Switzerland and they were coached by experts from ILO and mentored by senior staff from the Alliance4YOUth private sector partners. The challenge ended with a final sponsored pitch event and prizes included internships at Alliance4YOUth companies.

Mobile health for non-communicable diseases (SDG 3)

In spring 2018 the challenge targeted SDG 3: Healthy Lives and Well-Being for All at All Ages, and was run in collaboration with Be He@lthy, Be Mobile, a joint program between the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Students (Bachelors or Masters level) were coached by experts from ITU, WHO and Tsinghua X-lab about crowdsourcing solutions to mobile health for non-communicable diseases, using open data.75 students registered from around the world, and 35 were selected to form 9 teams. Prizes included invitations to UNLEASH Innovation Lab in Singapore (Carlsberg Foundation, Dalberg, Deloitte and UNDP) and to the SDG Summer School.