In the mountainous regions of Georgia, the landscapes create barriers in waste collection and treatment. Photo: Karen Cirillo / UNDP

More than 150,000 people still lack access to modern energy services, water and sanitation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Over the last 40 years, 70 percent of Georgia has suffered repeated hydro-meteorological and geological events, with economic losses exceeding US$14 billion. In the Republic of Moldova, the rural productivity is highly vulnerable to climatic conditions which leads to annual loses at 3.5–7 percent of GDP.

Despite significant development progress in these countries, they still face considerable poverty levels, economic and social inequalities, gender discrimination, unequal access to public services and slow progress in democratic governance reforms.

With its successful transfer from a centrally planned economy to the open market in a democratic environment, the Czech Republic has many lessons to share with the new developing economies in the region.

What we’re already working on

Last year, 11 experts, NGOs and companies from the Czech Republic were accepted for the 2018 Challenge Fund to bring their knowledge to the region. What issues have they been tackling?

  • In Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the city’s municipal companies used different individual systems to control and manage information and resources. Incinity S.R.O., a Czech company, is sharing a solution that connects data from different technologies and systems into one to effectively manage different the resources and activities. The benefits run from improved traffic lights and parking control to more efficient management of district heating, public lighting and water and sewage.

  • A new Georgian code obligates municipalities to adopt waste management and recycling plans. This is particularly complicated in the mountain areas, where the landscape characteristics create barriers in waste collection and treatment; especially in protected areas with stricter environmental requirements and higher number of visitors. Caritas Czech Republic is working in the Pshav-Khevsureti Protected Area and surrounding territories to develop a sustainable plan.

  • Moldova’s continental climate brings harsh conditions to some roads, with climate change bringing more and heavier rain and snow. Cross Zlín A.S. has installed road weather stations and introduced corresponding software to measure anticyclones, depressions and fronts. This new technology is significantly improving Moldova’s road weather maintenance.

These are just some of the ways we are supporting crucial reform agendas, innovation, and knowledge sharing to help these countries and have impact on its citizens.

But we need your help!

As Czech UNDP partnership, we’re happy to announce a challenge to help tackle these issues.

The Challenge Fund

We are looking for individuals, NGOs, research centers or companies from the Czech Republic that can help us find innovative solutions to cover the development challenges in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia and the Republic of Moldova.

By taking part in the challenge, you can help more than 11,200,000 inhabitants who live in these countries.

You will bring innovative solutions, new production or environmental technologies, services, ideas, or products to the locals in the region.

The proposed solutions need to have a potential for commercial sustainability and scale up in the priority country and a broader region. They must be available for sharing, replicable and must built on technologies or methodologies that are adaptable to various contexts.

Want a more detailed description? Check out our guidelines.

If you win, you’ll receive a US$20-40,000 cash prize, and the chance to see your solution tested and have direct impact.

And you could have a bigger impact as well. If successful, the solution is likely to be replicated in other parts of the world.

So, are you up for helping us change the world?

For more information, read the call for proposals and apply before Monday, 6 May 2019.

Help us get the word out – and share information about the #challengefund with your partners and networks – thank you!

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