DataKind Partners with on $10M Inclusive Growth & Recovery Challenge

July 16, 2020

DataKind is thrilled to partner with on the $10 Million Inclusive Growth and Recovery Challenge

Launched in partnership with the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth and The Rockefeller Foundation, the goal of the Challenge is to find exceptional ideas from around the globe that apply data science and AI to encourage inclusive growth and economic recovery. As the technical partner, DataKind’s role is to ensure the most impactful data science proposals are selected and the winning projects are supported for success. We just wrapped a series of three webinars to help Challenge applicants with their submissions, covering a wide-range of topics including data science solutions, scoping, and data ethics.

To assess submissions, we’ve recruited hundreds of expert volunteer reviewers worldwide to evaluate the thousands of applications to the Challenge. Our volunteer data scientists bring years of experience and will be assessing submissions on the following criteria:

  • Impactful: Addressing an important inclusive growth challenge

  • Replicable: Presenting a proposal that can be adapted to different cases

  • Scalable: Creating a project that can be expanded on a larger scale

  • Practical: Meeting reasonable resource and execution requirements with manageable risks

  • Breakthrough: Designing an insightful and new application of data science

Once the Challenge winners are selected, we’ll support them by offering expertise, where appropriate, through our global network of volunteers.

“At DataKind, we envision a world where anyone who holds a data scienceable social problem is able to ethically apply, create, or commission a data solution for it. The Challenge presents a unique opportunity to highlight scalable data science projects across the world that can transform and advance financial inclusion and economic opportunity,” shared Jake Porway, DataKind’s Founder and Executive Director. 

The Challenge will award up to ten winners with data science talent, software, training, and funding from $10K up to $10M USD in a mix of grant-funding, technical support and consulting, media production, marketing and promotional outreach, and software and infrastructure licenses.

If you have an idea or a project that utilizes data science for inclusive growth and recovery, apply to get it funded! Visit for more information and take a look at the webinars below to help determine if you're a good fit. The deadline for the Challenge submissions is 11:59 PM EDT on Friday, July 17. 

Art of the Possible: Showcasing Data Science Solutions in Inclusive Growth & Recovery

Webinar Recording | Slides

How can we use data science to build inclusive growth and recovery? Many mission-driven organizations know all about the complexities of addressing wicked problems, but don’t know where to start with data science and AI. This webinar unpacks the way identifying data science solutions to wicked problems is more of an art than a science through inclusive growth and recovery project examples. Participants walk away understanding how DataKind applies data science and AI in the service of humanity, how to artistically identify what’s possible in using data science for economic resilience, and how to prepare for the Challenge. By learning about data science for inclusive growth and recovery projects, participants can identify what might be possible for their organizations in partnership with DataKind and

Scoping 101: Identifying Your Data-Scienceable Problem

Webinar Recording | Slides

The most challenging part of executing on a data science problem is defining the problem statement. This is made even more challenging when working on the problems we call “wicked problems” - those that might not have a clear end state, suffer from contradictory information, or are in service of uniting a highly fragmented sector (e.g. “solving” poverty). This webinar walks participants through applying DataKind’s approach to scoping data for good projects. Through several inclusive growth and recovery examples, we demonstrate how to write problem statements and use DataKind’s “six components” to set a project up for success. By the end of Scoping 101, participants have the tools to identify a data-scienceable problem, map it to their organization’s theory of change, and articulate all this in a way that’ll resonate with both data scientists and social actors.

Data 101: Discussing Open Source Data, Overlooked Data, & the Ethics of Data

Webinar Recording | Slides

Many mission-driven organizations understand the power of data science, but they’re often stymied by a lack of data, unsure of where to look to obtain the right data, or confused as to the limitations and ethical considerations of launching a data science project. This webinar is for every organization that wants to launch a data for good project. To execute and maintain a strong data for good project, we believe that selecting the data source and considering the ethical implications of the data science project go hand in hand. In this webinar, we share possible data sources to consider using for inclusive growth and recovery projects, including open source and overlooked data. More importantly, we walk attendees through the ethical considerations of selecting data and data science solutions, and what the “risks of things going right” might be. We dive into how to apply research ethics to projects and how to prevent unintentional harm to the communities we’re aiming to help.