The World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE) announces six groundbreaking projects from around the world as Winners of the 2012 WISE Awards under the theme “Transforming Education”.
Now in their fourth year, the WISE Awards identify, showcase and promote innovative educational projects from all sectors and regions of the world in order to inspire change in education. Winning projects, which are selected for their concrete, positive impact upon society, receive global visibility and a prize of $20,000 (U.S.).
Hailing from Bangladesh, Cambodia, Chile, Denmark, India and the United States of America, the winning initiatives were selected by a Jury of leading education experts following a pre-selection of 24 WISE Awards finalists from 14 countries. Winning projects have been selected for their tangible, positive impact upon society and their innovative approach to solving important global problems.
“Since 2009, the WISE Awards have recognized successful, transformative projects in education in order to generate a pool of sound practices and to inspire their adoption and adaptation elsewhere,” said H.E. Sheikh Abdulla bin Ali Al-Thani, Ph.D., Chairman of WISE and Chairman of the WISE Awards Jury. “When determining the best projects, we look at what is being achieved as well as how it is done. The winning initiatives were selected because they are successful, but also because of their innovative approach. These are not ordinary education efforts.”
The diverse projects offer unique solutions to today’s most important challenges, from poverty to climate change. Solutions include unconventional business models to assist low-income families with affordable education, as well as original ways of bringing high-quality education to remote and destitute parts of the world.
“It is truly an honor for our project to be recognized as a WISE Awards winner, particularly because WISE’s mission is a reflection of our own: transforming education through innovation and purposeful action,” said Father John P. Foley, Chair Emeritus of Cristo Rey Network, an organization that supports high-school students from low-income families.
“We have seen the successful results of our efforts in the US and we are eager to expand our education model globally. With the recognition that being a WISE Awards winner brings to our project, the ability to explore other markets that could benefit from the Cristo Rey Network model is much greater.”
This year one of the WISE Awards is for a project that, in addition to “Transforming Education”, has best provided innovative financing of primary education. The winning project comes from Bangladesh, where solar-powered floating schools ensure year-round primary education to students in flood-prone areas, even during the height of the monsoon period.
This emphasis on primary education reflects the support of Qatar Foundation Chairperson Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser for United Nations Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 2 on achieving universal primary education. The WISE focus in 2012 on an innovative financing project is designed to stimulate efforts worldwide to reach MDG 2.
Finalists and Winners of the WISE Awards will participate in the annual WISE Summit taking place November 13 – 15 at the Qatar National Convention Centre in Doha, Qatar, under the theme “Collaborating for Change”.
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