Students from Uganda and the Taiwan Province of China win Women’s Empowerment Award at Microsoft’s Imagine Cup
St. Petersburg, Russia, 11 July — Students from Uganda and Taiwan Province of China have been named the winners of the first Women’s Empowerment Award at Microsoft’s global student software competition Imagine Cup for cost-effective applications that can potentially improve women’s health. Jointly established by Microsoft and UN Women in 2013, the award supports technology solutions that address challenges women face globally.
In first place, Team Code 8 from Uganda won US$12,000 for a “blood-free” Windows Phone Application called Matibabu that diagnoses malaria in the shortest time possible without having to perform the more traditional and time-consuming diagnostic test for malaria that involves pricking the finger for a blood sample, and waiting for lab results. Coming in at second place, Team Omni-Hearing Solution from Taiwan received USD 8,000 for a smart-technology driven application alternative to the more expensive traditional hearing aid. The award winnings will enable students to further test, fine tune, and take to market their solutions, as well as provide them the jumpstart they need to attract venture capitalists to take their products to scale.
Both applications have benefits to improve the lives of women; especially in areas where healthcare access is limited and cost-effective solutions are urgently required to overcome economic barriers women may face.