Nine Teams Propose XPRIZE Competitions To Address Grand Challenges At Visioneers Summit

Nine Teams Propose XPRIZE Competitions To Address Grand Challenges At Visioneers Summit

All Teams Result in Viable Future XPRIZE Concepts, with Top Three Teams Certified as “Ready for Launch” in the Areas of Cancer, Avatars, and ALS

LOS ANGELES (October 4, 2016) XPRIZE, the global leader in incentive prize competitions, this weekend convened nine international teams to share their prize concepts across a portfolio of Grand Challenge areas at the Visioneers 2016 Summit, presented by the Roddenberry Foundation.

A group of 250 mentors, composed of prominent corporate and political leaders, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, artists, technologists and scientists, evaluated and critiqued each of the nine XPRIZE proposals over the course of the two-and-a-half-day Summit. The Visioneers teams worked on their proposals for five months, culminating with the Summit used to evolve the concepts from “good to great”.

“With this Summit model, we have gamified and crowdsourced aspects of our internal prize development process by challenging teams to develop their proposals for how they would leverage the XPRIZE model to solve a Grand Challenge,” said Marcus Shingles, CEO of XPRIZE. “It was a significant success as a result of the tremendous efforts of many, and after a collaborative weekend of feedback, mentorship, and critique, we have ultimately defined a powerful portfolio of XPRIZE concepts. We are particularly proud of all nine teams; they were the ‘rock stars’ of the Summit and the type of passionate bold innovators and exponential thinkers that XPRIZE appreciates most.”

“We applaud all nine teams for their passion, persistence, courage and vision,” added Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, executive chairman and founder of XPRIZE. “Each team’s concept not only addressed one of the world’s Grand Challenges, but also was in line with Gene Roddenberry’s worldview, in honor of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek.”

Following are the top three teams certified as “Ready for Launch”:

Conquering Cancer XPRIZE, sponsored by Deloitte
Led by Deloitte and Dr. Daniel Kraft, the team is focused on “conquering cancer,” with the goal of “eliminating preventable cancer deaths” through early detection. Today, there are 21st century treatments for cancer, but 20th century cancer detection. Imagine the reduction in deaths and suffering if everyone, everywhere had access to 21st century cancer detection – that’s how we can conquer cancer. The winning team of the Conquering Cancer XPRIZE will develop a global solution designed to rapidly, affordably, and accurately detect cancer early where intervention can reduce human suffering. Dr. Kraft is a physician-scientist, inventor, entrepreneur and innovator, who is also the founder and Executive Director of Exponential Medicine at Singularity University.

Avatar XPRIZE, sponsored by ANA
Led by Dr.2 Harry Kloor, Ph.D, Ph.D, the team is focused on creating avatars that would enable people’s consciousness to be transported instantaneously across the globe and beyond. The global impact of having access to working avatars would be huge; they would revolutionize modern society and enable the free and immediate passage of skilled workers to where they are most needed, possibilities include providing medical care, education and rescue missions, regardless of distance, borders or dangerous site conditions. Dr.2 Kloor is an American scientist, film producer, director, writer and entrepreneur, with experience in robotics, augmented reality, virtual reality, haptic technologies, machine-brain technologies and telepresence.

Cat’s Iron Will ALS XPRIZE, sponsored by Caterpillar Inc.
Led by Dr. Melanie Leitner, the team focused on “removing ALS patients from death row” by improving quality of life for those fighting the disease through assistive devices - devices that would go on to aid hundreds of millions of others with diseases, injured veterans, those with physical disabilities as well as the frail and aging population. Through the development of novel assistive technologies, the team envisions a world where ALS is no longer a death sentence or even a prison, but where ALS patients and others living with physical disabilities can live their lives independently. Dr. Leitner, founder of Accelerating NeuroVentures, is a consultant who advises companies, foundations, and investors interested in translating neuroscience discoveries into breakthroughs for patients.

The following six teams also shared concepts for potential XPRIZE competitions:
(listed in alphabetical order)

Affordable Housing XPRIZE, sponsored by Bosa Properties with Leonard Brody
Led by Yaron Schwarcz, the team focused on “ensuring everyone has direct access to acceptable and affordable housing,” with the goal of “sparking exponential leaps in construction technologies, speed and safety – ultimately decreasing both the time and cost it takes to make affordable housing available.” Schwarcz, founder and CEO of Tridom: Robotic Construction, is a consultant and thought leader for innovation and accelerating technologies.

Desalination XPRIZE, sponsored by National Research Foundation Singapore
Led by Alisa Ferguson, the team focused on “bringing water abundance to communities around the globe,” with the goal of “making the world’s water sources accessible and sustainable—for human development, economic growth, and the health and biodiversity of the planet.” Ferguson has spent more than 15 years working at the intersection of technology, business and policy to force strategies that accelerate innovation.

Experiential Empathy XPRIZE, sponsored by The Roddenberry Foundation
The team focused on “experiential empathy” with the goal of challenging teams to develop innovative technologies for teaching empathy and compassion as well as scaling the untapped and exponentially unifying power of human empathy and compassion to address global challenges. Supported by Dr. Dan Cordaro, Dr. Alexandra Ivanovitch, and Fuji Lai, the team is exploring ways to leverage exponential technologies to democratize the teaching and learning of empathy and compassion, critical skills in our increasingly connected and yet divided world.

Healthy & Safe Homes XPRIZE, sponsored by Lowe’s
Led by Eric Corey Freed, the team focused on “healthy and safe homes,” with the goal of “seeking buildings that are alive and adapt to make us well.” Corey Freed has dedicated his career to sustainable, healthy buildings and has published numerous books on the subject. He is also a frequent guest commentator on CNN, FoxNews, PBS and HGTV.

Nutritious Abundance XPRIZE, sponsored by the Nutritious Abundance Collaborative
Led by Ignacio Peña, the team focused on “access to a healthy diet for all” with the goal of “developing sustainable solutions that offer our expanding population access to affordable and freshly grown nutritious food.” Peña is a social entrepreneur, innovator and strategist trained at Wharton-Lauder who is dedicated to catalyzing abundance, inclusion and regeneration through high impact ideas, initiatives and startups.

Safe Drinking Water XPRIZE, sponsored by Brita®
Led by William Sarni, the team focused on “democratizing access to safe drinking water and data” with the goal of providing “universal access to safe drinking water, always. Sarni, a managing director at Deloitte Consulting LLP, is an internationally recognized thought leader on water strategy and water technology innovation.

For more information, visit www.xprize.org/visioneers.

XPRIZE, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is the global leader in designing and implementing innovative competition models to solve the world’s grandest challenges. XPRIZE utilizes a unique combination of gamification, crowd-sourcing, incentive prize theory, and exponential technologies as a formula to make 10x (vs. 10%) impact in the grand challenge domains facing our world. XPRIZE’s philosophy is that—under the right circumstances— igniting rapid experimentation from a variety of diverse lenses is the most efficient and effective method to driving exponential impact and solutions to grand challenges. Active competitions include the $30M Google Lunar XPRIZE, the $20M NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE, the $15M Global Learning XPRIZE, the $10M Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE, the $7M Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE, the $7M Adult Literacy XPRIZE, the $7M Barbara Bush Foundation Adult Literacy XPRIZE and the $5M IBM Watson AI XPRIZE. For more information, visit www.xprize.org.

Media Contact:
Eric Desatnik
[email protected]

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