The Circle Foundation and XPRIZE Partner to Design Competition

Aug 15 2019

XPRIZE, the global leader in designing and operating incentive competitions to solve humanity’s grand challenges, is collaborating with The Circle Foundation to begin designing an incentive competition in clean air, focused on improving the global fine dust pollution problem.

“Air pollution kills around 7 million people worldwide every year. The fine dust problem that poses the greatest risks to health is a very complex phenomenon in which the causative agents generated from various pollutants are gradually amplified. Therefore, a long-term, comprehensive, and systematic approach is required,” said Dr. Cheol-Soo Ahn, founder of The Circle Foundation. “It is a global phenomenon that spreads across borders like air pollution in general. We cannot solve the problem without international cooperation supported by strong incentives. That is why The Circle Foundation has decided to partner with XPRIZE.”

As economies have grown and nations developed, man-made emissions from increased industrial and urban activities have led to an explosion of anthropogenic emissions, especially the fine dust matter. According to the United Nations Environment Programme, an estimated four billion individuals live with hazardous levels of air contamination, most of which live in Asia. While efforts have been made, no one has found a fundamental solution to alleviate fine dust pollution. The competition will be designed to increase international awareness of the problem and to incentivize global innovators to find a solution.

“XPRIZE believes access to clean air is a fundamental human right,” said Zenia Tata, chief impact officer of XPRIZE. “With a proven track record of dealing with some of the toughest problems on our planet, we hope the design of this competition focusing on clean air will harness the power of competition to drive innovation and solutions.”

In order to develop this XPRIZE concept, XPRIZE will begin background research, development of competition rules and operating guidelines.