The World Bank today announced the Top 10 Finalists of the Sanitation Hackathon App Challenge, a competition that is surfacing innovative, citizen-designed and technology-enabled solutions to sanitation challenges in the developing world.
“Over 2.5 billion people worldwide lack access to proper sanitation, yet over 1 billion of these people have access to a mobile phone,” said Jae So, manager of the Water and Sanitation Program at the World Bank. “The key is to use rising access to mobile phones and other communications technologies to generate solutions to entrenched challenges such as limited access to toilets, weak supply chains for sanitary products, or limited feedback mechanisms that citizens can use to voice needs and complaints,” she said.
“The Sanitation Hackathon is enabling the World Bank to explore the use of open development processes to improve and strengthen projects all over the world,” said Chris Vein, Chief Innovation Officer for Global Information and Communication Technology Development at the World Bank. “By teaming citizens and technologists with sanitation sector experts, we are coming to solutions the Bank would never have been able to develop on its own,” he said.
The Top 10 Finalists apps, in alphabetical order, are:
· Empowering Girls monitors girls’ school attendance to track appropriate sanitation facilities.
· LION Sync provides decision-makers with access to real-time data online and offline.
· LooRewards promotes sanitary behavior by rewarding safe sanitation practices.
· mSchool monitors the status of water and sanitation infrastructure in schools.
· mSewage crowdsources the identification of open defecation sites and sewage outflows.
· San-Trac reminds users about hygienic practices and gathers real-time data for trend analysis.
· Sanitation Investment Tracker tracks investment and expenditure in sanitation at the household level.
· SunClean teaches sanitary and hygienic behavior through games for children.
· Taarifa enables citizen reporting and tracks decision-makers’ feedback.
· Toilight finds toilets in a smart and easy way.
More information about each app, the teams, and the technology used can be found here. San-Trac also won the People’s Choice Award, which was calculated by Facebook votes and Twitter mentions of the competing teams’ name and the Twitter hashtag #SanHack. The Grand Prize Award winners will be announced on April 19, on the eve of the World Bank’s Spring Meetings.
The Sanitation Hackathon is a project of the World Bank’s Water Practice and ICT Unit, and is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.