WSIS Prizes 2016: prestigious global ‘ICT4D’ awards to be conferred on 3 May
Date: Wed, 04/20/2016 - 12:54
Online voting saw over 245,000 votes for the year’s best projects
ITU will announce the 18 winners of the prestigious WSIS Prizes at a ceremony at Geneva International Conference Centre on 3 May, as part of the annual WSIS Forum 2016 (2 - 6 May).
WSIS Prizes honour outstanding projects that leverage the power of information and communication technology (ICT) to accelerate socio-economic development.
More than 400 ICT success stories were submitted for the 2016 edition of the prize. Out of 311 nominated projects, 179 projects came from the government sector, 41 from the business sector, 31 from civil society, 14 from international organizations, and 46 from academia and other entities.
The regional distribution was:
Africa region: 27 projects
Arab region: 86 projects
Asia & Pacific region: 73 projects
Americas region: 53 projects
CIS region: 31 projects
European region: 36 projects
Five nominated projects came from international organizations.
“ITU warmly congratulates this year’s winners and applauds WSIS stakeholders everywhere for outstanding efforts to harness the power of ICTs to reach the global connectivity targets that will play such an important part in achieving the 17 SDGs,” said ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao.
The WSIS Prizes contest is open to all stakeholders: governments, private sector, civil society, international organizations, academia and others. The contest comprises 18 categories directly linked to the WSIS Action Lines outlined in the Geneva Plan of Action.
ITU recognizes WSIS Champions
In recognition that not every worthy project can win a prestigious WSIS Prize, this year will see the introduction of the ‘WSIS Champions’ selected from the 311 nominated ICT global success stories.
Based on the results of the intensive Online Voting Phase, which saw over 245,000 votes cast by WSIS stakeholders, a selection of winning projects was made by the Expert Group. Eighteen of these projects will go on to win WSIS Prizes, and a remaining 70 ‘WSIS Champions’ will receive special certificates of achievement at a special ceremony prior to the Knowledge Café on Wednesday 4 May entitled Implementing Best Practices and Addressing Challenges: Meet the Winners and Champions. The Champions will also be invited to participate in the WSIS Stocktaking and Prizes Interactive Session on Friday 6 May 2016.
“WSIS Champions will form a key part of our global and grassroots community engaged in online and community advocacy, and we are delighted to support and recognize them,” said Mr Zhao.
Besides the highlighted relevance of the project to the respective WSIS Action Line as referenced in the Geneva Plan of Action, the selection process was based on the project’s impact on the community and linkages with the Sustainable Development Goals (as listed in the Rules and Guidelines on the WSIS Prizes 2016 website).
All stakeholders are invited to visit WSIS Prizes 2016 website and explore the Most Voted Projects page to learn who this year’s 88 Champions are. WSIS Prizes Champions project descriptions will be published in the WSIS Stocktaking: Success Stories 2016, to be released also during the WSIS Forum 2016.
Above, ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao
Image credited to the ITU