D-Prize: Distribution Equals Development 2018

Publish Date: Feb 27, 2018

Deadline: Apr 02, 2018

D-Prize Challenges

The world has already invented ways to end poverty, yet the best interventions are not being distributed at mass-scale. Can you design a business or NGO that solves one of the Distribution Challenges below?

If selected we will award you up to $20,000 to launch a pilot in any region where extreme poverty exists. 

Who Should Apply?

You should have enormous ambition and can imagine yourself as a successful entrepreneur. You are ready to launch your new venture, and - if a pilot proves successful – you are excited to grow it into a world changing organization. If you are still a student or have existing commitments, you should have a clear idea how to transition into a full-time founder. D-Prize is exclusively interested in ventures that will scale distribution of an already proven poverty intervention in the developing world. It does not fund prototypes of promising new interventions. 


D-Prize challenges are open to anyone or any teams. The sole restriction is that individuals and their immediate family on the judging panel may not participate as a contestant. D-Prize is also open to any business model (for profit, non-profit, and everything in between). All winners will be awarded up to $20,000. The award is offered in the form of a convertible grant. Up to 25 of the most promising proposals will be selected for funding awards, regardless of which challenge track was selected.

Submission Policies 

  • Proposals must be submitted following the instructions in this packet.
  • Extra material outside of the proposal will not be considered.
  • Revisions to proposals after submission will also not be considered.
  • Only one proposal per person or partnership will be considered.
  • Proposals must be written in English.

Deadlines and the Prize Process 

Round 1

First Round proposals will be accepted on a rolling basis, using the following deadlines. Program strivese to send decisions out within three weeks. Judges may request additional information via email before making a decision.

Early decision deadline: April 2, 2018 at midnight PT (Pacific Time). Early decision proposals are more likely to advance to the next round, and will have additional time on for the full proposal.

Regular deadline: April 23, 2018 at midnight PT.

Extension deadline: May 14, 2018 at midnight PT. 

Round 2

Top entrepreneurs invited to participate in Round 2 will be asked to draft and submit a full plan of their venture, roughly 10 pages in length plus any desired appendices. The plan will include more details on operations, a budget, milestones, and other items. Participants will receive a Round 2 Proposal Packet with full instructions. Those invited to the Second Round will have about four weeks to submit a plan.

Final Round

Entrepreneurs invited to the Final Round will interview with judges over email and on the phone. Depending on the promise and cost-effectiveness of a proposal, judges may award up to $20,000 in funding. The average D-Prize award size is $12,000. 

Piloting Winning Ventures

Besides direct funding, D-Prize can assist in helping your venture attract future funding if the pilot proves successful. Judges will also provide you access to the D-Prize network of past winners and will do their best to support you in other ways. 

First Round Judging Criteria 

Judging Process

All proposals will receive an initial read from at least two judges, and if advanced will receive up to two additional independent readings. Judges may request additional information via email before deciding. Judging Criteria The D-Prize judging panel is composed of individuals with professional experience distributing life-changing technologies in the developing world. Contestants are evaluated based on: 

Passion and potential for candidate’s success, as evident by their academic and professional background, relevant skills, and quick leadership trajectory.

Focus on distribution. Proposals must focus on distributing a proven poverty solution that needs greater access in the developing world.

Potential for scale, based on the organizational model proposed in the concept note and the entrepreneur’s desire to commit and grow.

Proposal Tips

  • Be succinct. Successful proposals are objective and to the point. Orient your proposal towards an educated judge who is relatively knowledgeable with the key issues.
  • Scale, impact, cost-effectiveness. Successful entrepreneurs will build a plausible case that their intervention is highly scalable, cost-effective, and will lead to enormous impact.
  • Keep within scope. The most successful startups have a narrow focus and avoid spending resources on too many areas. A tightly scoped idea will perform best in this competition. 

First Round Proposal

Concept Note

Please prepare a concept note which responds to the following prompts. Concept notes are limited to three pages.

  • Introduction: please begin your concept note with a short 1-3 sentence summarizing your idea.
  • Problem: what are the most critical barriers preventing better distribution of your selected intervention in your pilot region? Be specific.
  • Concept: how does your distribution model overcome these barriers? We want to understand what your model looks like, and how you will implement. (This will be most of your concept note)
  • Goals: what success targets must you hit for you to be convinced your pilot is successful? A table with quantitative metrics is encouraged.
  • Future Growth: What reach does your organization have over the long term? (Consider discussing future goals, your fundraising plans, and additional staffing plans).
  • Team: list all the people on your team, their responsibilities, their location during the pilot, and the average hours per week they will commit to this venture. If not local to your operating region, please note any developing country experience.

Resumes / CVs

Please include a resume for each person on your team, limited to one page per person. Resumes should highlight the most relevant past leadership roles and accomplishments.

Additional Information

Custom Challenge: Are you submitting to a Custom Challenge category?

If so:

  • When submitting, the committee will ask you to provide a URL link to one website with credible evidence that supports your intervention.
  • The program also recommends you include 1 additional page elaborating on your intervention, and citing evidence that it is proven and in need of greater distribution.

Existing organizations: has your organization already launched? If so, you will be asked to include a summary of your activities since launching, and your current budget/income statement in the submission webform. 

Prize Challenges

  • Girl's education
  • Agriculture
  • Energy
  • Global health
  • Education
  • Governance and infrastructure
  • Custom

For more information click "LINK TO ORIGINAL" below.

This opportunity has expired. It was originally published here:


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