Innovation For Good: The living process challenge

A programmer in Washington, D.C writes a line of code, and in Tanzania a group of 20 women use a mobile app to efficiently manage and grow their businesses—giving them financial security and independence.

It’s astonishing to think that a simple mobile app can change a life halfway around the world.

That very concept inspired the Living Progress Challenge, a competition that tasked organizations and brands to develop software applications and digital services to improve lives around the world. Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), the Challenge was created to reach HPE’s goal of improving the lives of 1 million people by 2020, through the development and implementation of smart technologies.

Back to that little line of code: Pact’s MyWORTH app was one of four winners of the Challenge, besting 400 total ideas and 130 proposals submitted. The app provided a digital extension to Pact’s long-running WORTH micro-banking program, which brings groups of 20-25 women together to save money, access credit, and start small businesses. The app will digitize that experience, providing women with better record-keeping and tracking resources.

The Challenge’s other winners included MentorME, a program of Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s Business Process Improvement Team, which connects struggling high school students around the world to engaged adult mentors; All For Good, a platform developed by Points of Light, which transforms the way volunteers and organizations connect online; and Detect IT: Fish, a program of the World Wildlife Fund and TRAFFIC, a web-based tool that uses big data to combat illegal fishing.

Each of the 10 finalists proved the power of technology—from smart UX to machine learning processes—to enhance existing programs or solutions. There is a tremendous amount of data in the world, much of it untouched and underutilized.

At Matchfire, this is a concept we truly believe in and are investing in. As we work with our clients to develop strategies, products, and solutions that seek to impart change in the world, it’s increasingly important that we help them amplify that impact through the implementation of those smart technologies.

Our team left the Challenge inspired and looking forward to seeing how the 10 finalists’ vitally important technologies change the world for the better.