IBM announces it is accepting proposals for the next cohort of the IBM Sustainability Accelerator, which will focus on global water management solutions. This program applies IBM technologies, such as hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence, and an ecosystem of experts to scale projects focused on populations vulnerable to environmental threats.
The World Health Organization says over 2 billion people live in water-stressed countries. This challenge is expected to be exacerbated in some regions as a result of climate change and population growth.
In alignment with United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6, IBM will look to support projects that help improve equitable access to safe drinking water for all, improve water quality by reducing pollution, increase water-use efficiency across all sectors, protect and restore water-related ecosystems, increase sanitation management, and reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity.
The RFP Process
The RFP process will include input from IBM across disciplines and from representatives from organizations such as Water.org and the United Nations Development Programme. The selection criteria will consider the applicant’s capacity for water management and readiness to support communities that are especially vulnerable to water-related threats, technical feasibility and sustainability for the envisioned solution, and transparency on measurement and reporting.
This year’s RFP process will include input from Ben Mandell, Utility Services Expert at Water.org, and Mary M. Matthews, Head of the UNDP Ocean Innovation Challenge and interim Head of the Water and Ocean Governance Programme, as well as other partner experts. They will share their input and expertise throughout the selection cycle.
“Innovation in the water management space is key for meeting UN SDG 6,” said Mandell, one of the judges for the water cohort selection. “Organization initiatives that are selected to participate in the IBM Sustainability Accelerator will have a significant opportunity to make an impact with the help of IBM’s technology, expertise, and network across its large ecosystem of partners.”
Non-profit and government initiatives focused on water management can apply to the RFP from March 14th until the end of May 2023. The selected participants will be announced in November 2023.