Wireless Innovation Project

Promoting innovation and increasing implementation of wireless related technology for a better world.

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Fighting Cholera With a Smartphone

Global health experts don’t worry about if a major infectious disease outbreak will occur; it’s just a matter of when. A daunting barrier in the ongoing fight against infectious diseases is the ability to detect infectious agents in the environment before an outbreak begins. In June, the Vodafone Americas Foundation recognized a technology attempting to tackle exactly that problem in its ninth annual Wireless Innovation Project competition: a Purdue University spin-off called PathVis.

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PathVis: A Smartphone-Based Platform That Fights Cholera

Cholera is a preventable and easily treatable disease, but it presents a huge threat in developing countries—every year, there are between 1.3 and 4 million cases worldwide, resulting in up to 143,000 deaths. Sadly, nearly 1.8 billion people around the world drink water that can carry the cholera bacterium. Now two female researchers, Jacqueline Linnes and Tamara Kinzer-Ursem have developed a smartphone-based platform to help detect disease pathogens before they spread. PathVis is a mobile tool that puts a lab in the palm of your hand.

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Q&A: Director of Vodafone Americas Foundation on the Role of Passion in Addressing Development Needs

In her 10 years as director of the Vodafone Americas Foundation, June Sugiyama has inadvertently become an expert in developing challenges.  Since 2009, the foundation has been running the Wireless Innovation Challenge, which seeks innovative ideas using wireless-related technology to address social issues around the world.  Years of leading the challenge have helped Sugiyama to refine ideas of what works in creating disruption to address social and other issues affecting developing countries.

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The Potential for Mobile Data to Impact Social Good

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In June, a collaboration between UN Global Pulse, the United Nations, and the GSMA released The State of Mobile Data for Social Good report which looks at how mobile big data can be an incredible resource in driving social good efforts around the world.

The report was produced with the support of Vodafone Americas Foundation and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), and released at an event at the Vodafone offices in New York.  During the event, a panel of experts representing the mobile data for good ecosystem—MNOs, UN, donors, data scientists— explored what opportunities mobile has opened, the challenges the field is facing, and what actions should be taken in order to improve the outcome of mobile data for global development. More

Join Us: Women and Girls Speak Up and Stay Safe: Media and Mobiles Event

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Digital technology and social media have given people all over the world ways to make their voices heard, and they’ve also sparked countless meaningful conversations and interactions. However, these platforms, although well intended, do not always lead positive communication. They have unfortunately opened the door for cyberbullying and online harassment, especially targeted at women and girls.

On Tuesday, June 6th, we will host a panel with Internews, in partnership with Technology Salon NYC, to explore the safety and security of women on media platforms. More

Supporting Social Innovation Through Employee Engagement

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At the Vodafone Americas Foundation, we bring people together from all sectors to address some of the world’s most pressing social issues. We also know that sometimes the biggest change starts right at home, with our own workforce. As times change, so too do the opportunities for employee engagement. Just a few years ago, employee engagement might refer to volunteering at a local food pantry, or an after-hours mentoring agency. Increasingly, however, the workforce is becoming more diverse, more technologically connected, and more interested in helping their communities in novel and creative ways. More