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Contest for Innovation in Rainwater Storage

EnterpriseWorks/VITA, a leader in the transfer of technology to developing markets, has partnered with InnoCentive, an open innovation marketplace where non-profits, companies and government agencies can post Challenges online for the public to solve. EnterpriseWorks/VITA has posted its first Challenge seeking design ideas for a low-cost rainwater storage system that can be installed in households in developing countries.

According to the UNICEF/World Health Organization (WHO) Joint Monitoring Program, there are still 883 million people without access to improved water sources and 746 million of them live in rural areas where the provision of water to dispersed communities is problematic. Rainwater harvested from rooftops is considered an improved water source and is naturally widely distributed. In order to be effectively used the harvested water must be stored safely. This requires significant on-site storage capacity that is too expensive for many communities to implement at the household level. The Challenge is looking for a product that can be built and installed for less than $20 with a 500 liter capacity without subsidy, thus enabling families to afford these systems for their homes.

The Challenge offers a $15,000 award to the person that provides the best solution. The Challenge will be posted on InnoCentive until January 12, 2009.

Read the full Challenge Details.