Global South-South Development Expo 2021

Call Open for Youth4South Entrepreneurship Competition 

Advancing South-South & Triangular Cooperation for Sustainable COVID-19 Recovery: Towards a Smart & Resilient Future 

Background

GSSD Expo is an annual event organized by the United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC) designed to showcase evidence-based successful development solutions and initiatives. The GSSD Expo 2022 will be co-hosted by the Government of Thailand and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). In the lead up to the upcoming GSSD Expo, young entrepreneurs’ competition will be organized in line with the GSSD Expo theme to support recovery efforts, particularly in addressing extreme poverty, food insecurity, vaccination inequality, and other global challenges through South-South and triangular cooperation.

Objectives

Through this entrepreneurship competition, young talents from across developing countries will have an opportunity to gather, share knowledge and ideas, and collaborate to develop and scale-up innovative solutions. Everyone can play a role in the SDG decade of action, especially the passionate, innovative, and entrepreneurial young leaders who have demonstrated their capacities and commitment to make the world a more inclusive and sustainable place. The objective of this competition is to promote South-South cooperation by sharing, replicating, or scaling up entrepreneurs existing innovations with relevant partners, entrepreneurs and audiences from other developing countries

Structure and Plan

  • Call for application and Source young entrepreneurs and talents (Nov 2021-Jan 2022): working with trusted partners to source and select top talents and entrepreneurs with established enterprises and desire to create change. A call to select entrepreneurs will be launched globally. Top candidates will be selected from developing countries, and preference will be given to Asia and the Pacific region, gender balance will also be maintained in the cohort.
  • Training and boot camps for the entrepreneurs (March 2022 – 1 Day): all the selected youth will undergo training on entrepreneurship, innovation, business model, proposal development, marketing with a focus on how to scale up to achieve SDGs.
  • Co-creation and collaboration (March 2022 – 1 Day): the candidates will be placed in groups of ten, to collaborate, do group exercises and ignite new discussions and unlock new perspectives. They will be provided with a knowledge-sharing platform, and an alumni network a broader community of global talent is developed.
  • Hackathon and Entrepreneurship Shark-style Competition (March 2022 – 1 Day): entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to present their initiatives to expert panels. Their presentations and initiatives will be evaluated and those selected (5-10) will qualify for the “Match-making and Scaling-up of Youth-led Good Practices Competition”. Selected winners may qualify for participation in-person competition in Bangkok in September 2022. 
  • The final competition and awarding ceremony (September 2022) final winners will be provided seed funding– to mobilize private sector partners/foundations interested in SDG work to provide seed funding.

The Timeline

Key Thematic Focus areas for Entrepreneurs

The overall focus area will be the theme of the GSSD Expo “Advancing South-South and Triangular Cooperation for Sustainable COVID-19 Recovery: Towards a smart and resilient future” with the key sub-themes for entrepreneurs initiatives/projects to relate to the following areas:

  • Poverty eradication and reduction of inequalities
  • Digitalization and smart future
  • Creative economy and sustainable tourism
  • Green recovery, environment sustainability and climate action
  • Food security and supply chain
  • Disaster risk reduction and resilience building
  • Reproductive, sexual health, demographic data
  • Urbanization, local and city level development
  • Cross border e-commerce
  • vaccination inequality and COVID-19 response, recovery
  • Clean energy

All entrepreneurs will indicate which of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) their project relates to.

Selection and Eligibility Criteria

About the Entrepreneurs

  1. Must be between 18 and 35 years old (as of the Conference date)
  2. Preference will be given to citizens of Least Developed Countries (LDCs), SIDS, and women
  3. Proficiency in English required.

About the Entrepreneurs’ Initiatives

  1. Must be operational or registered for at least 6 months with demonstrated results, a tested MVP: product or service prototype, tested with already measured or measurable results
  2. Must be in line with the Sustainable Development Goals, Linking and tangible social impact metrics in relation to the priority SDG.
  3. Preferably must be in line with one or more of the thematic tracks as indicated above:
    • Poverty eradication and reduction of inequalities
    • Digitalization and smart future
    • Creative economy and sustainable tourism
    • Green recovery, environment sustainability and climate action
    • Food security and supply chain
    • Disaster risk reduction and resilience building
    • Reproductive, sexual health, demographic data
    • Urbanization, local and city level development
    • Cross border e-commerce
    • Vaccination inequality and COVID-19 response, recovery
    • Clean energy
  1. Must be innovative solutions, sustainability-driven, with a new approach to solving problems
  2. Must either have demonstrated or have the potential to be replicable and technically feasible for other countries, territories, or regions
  1. Level of impact (stage of the initiative) and social impact of the initiative: no. of individuals impacted, no. of jobs created, income generated, with tangible results and indicators. (20%)
  2. Business innovation: how innovative and out of the box are the solutions, Degree of comparative disruptiveness/innovation in the sector (global level). (20%)
  3. Potential of Scalability: the potential to be replicable and technically feasible for other regions, territories and countries. (20%)
  4. Alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals and South-South cooperation: how aligned are they with sustainable development and with south-south cooperation (20%)
  5. Cost and sustainability: proposed initiatives cost structure, and ability to sustain with a sustainable business model beyond aid/grants (10%)
  6. Communication and marketing ability: how multimedia savvy are the initiatives, quality of videos submitted, marketing ability (10%)