Increasing interoperability of data for social good

Rewarding Innovation – Each Winner to Receive $100,000 Grant: Interoperability is the key to making the whole greater than the sum of its parts

The social sector is full of passion, intuition, deep experience, and unwavering commitment. Increasingly, social change agents from funders to activists, are adding data and information as yet one more tool for decision-making and increasing impact.

But data sets are often isolated, fragmented and hard to use. Many organisations manage data with multiple systems, often due to various requirements from government agencies and private funders. The lack of interoperability between systems leads to wasted time and frustration. Even those who are motivated to use data end up spending more time and effort on gathering, combining, and analysing data, and less time on applying it to ongoing learning, performance improvement, and smarter decision-making.

It is the combining, linking, and connecting of different “data islands” that turns data into knowledge—knowledge that can ultimately help create positive change in our world. Interoperability is the key to making the whole greater than the sum of its parts. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, in partnership with Liquidnet for Good, is looking for groundbreaking ideas to address this significant, but solvable, problem. See the website for more detail on the challenge and application instructions. Each challenge winner will receive a grant of $100,000.

Applications will be accepted through 7 May 2013 11:30 AM PST.

For updates on the competition, follow #MFGChallenge on twitter. Sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in partnership with Liquidnet for Good.

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