Google UK have launched the second UK Google Impact Challenge today (Thursday 15th May), inviting any UK registered charity to tell them how they would use technology to change the world. In the biggest competition of its kind in the UK, 10 charities will be awarded grants, with four top prize winners each receiving £500,000 and six runners-up receiving £200,000.
Winners will be decided by a combination of public votes and by a panel of judges, including Dragon’s Den star Peter Jones, Comic Relief founder Emma Freud, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and others at a final event on 31st July.
Last year’s “fan favourite” winner, with hundreds of thousands of public votes, was the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), who created a camera system that is already tackling the poaching of endangered creatures in Africa.
ZSL uses next generation camera traps, equipped with automated sensors, to better protect threatened wildlife. As the 2013 Fan Favourite in the 2013 Google Impact Challenge, ZSL have already tested five cameras in Tsavo West National Park that will be rolled out this summer to help stop the crisis of wildlife poaching. Five cameras have also been successfully deployed in Antarctica for testing and to protect and monitor colonies of penguins – a world first.
Entrepeneur and Dragon's Den star Peter Jones and Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales launched the second Google Impact Challenge at ZSL London Zoo where they met ZSL conservationists who demonstrated their cutting-edge camera trap technology at the Zoo's Penguin Beach exhibit.