Supporting innovations that bring a common good
We have partnered up with the biggest startup event in Slovakia – the Startup Awards 2016 – in the Society category.
The biggest event in the Slovak startup world will take place on 2 December 2016. We are also joining the Startup Awards this year. The Society category has been placed under our patronage. At the Pontis Foundation, we support social innovations and the people behind them. We know that new technologies are often very helpful in resolving social problems.
“Technologies and innovations enable wonderful changes that can make life much easier. We especially support those that lead to an improved and better life,”explains Lenka Surotchak, the Executive Director of the Pontis Foundation.
The Society category comprises technological startups whose products have a positive social impact. These will be the competing startups:
COrvus–a set of apps for Android smartphones designed for the blind and partially-sighted
Karmadilo– a platform for surveys in which the participant can select to donate their earned sum of money to a chosen non-profit organization
Stemi– a mobile app that enables an emergency responder to have a verbal and visual consultation on a patient’s ECG with a cardiologist. After confirming the occurrence of a heart attack, the patient can be immediately transported to a heart attack centre.
This year the event’s concept will be expanded to include an all-day programme full of presentations and panel discussions with world-class technologists, designers, and investors.Probably the best-known speaker is Uri Levine, the icon of the Israeli startup scene and the founder of Waze, an app for navigation.After Google bought this startup in 2013, Levine devoted himself to supporting new technological startups as an angel investor.
How technology contributes to society will be the main discussion topic for Esther Dyson, a Swiss-American investor, journalist, and philanthropist, named one of the most influential women in American business by Forbes magazine; and for John Sexton, the President of New York University, who started the global university project and fundraised a record amount of $4.9 billion in ten years.
“I will definitely attend John Sexton’s panel. Because NYU is my Alma Mater and also because it inspires me to understand learning as a value. I’m inspired by its history, which is closely connected with philanthropy, by the vision of the benefactors that founded the university, and by its inherent global outlook. I’m fascinated by John’s ability to govern such an enormous university and also by his remarkable ability to join spirituality with a game – teaching values through baseball – an iconic sport of New York and the United States,”says Surotchak.
“Be sure not to miss Esther Dyson. She has already invested in 150 businesses, but she does everything – from editing press releases to organizing events – while being both a board member in several companies and an investor. She said that the reason why she invests is to help carry out a good idea when she sees one and not just be an investor,”recommends Norbert Maur, a Programme Manager at the Pontis Foundation.
Other speakers include Yanki Margalit – an investor and technologist, and the founder of SpaceL, a non-profit organization which is trying to successfully land the first Israeli spacecraft on the Moon; Karel Obluk – a key person responsible for the success of the AVG antivirus software company; and Danny Carbera – a young 24-year-old biotechnologist and the founder of BioBots, a company developing 3D printers for printing human tissue.