SingularityU Portugal Global Impact Challenge (GIC): What’s next?

SingularityU Portugal Global Impact Challenge (GIC): What’s next?

What moonshot idea would you develop that would impact the lives of a billion people in the next 10 years by applying exponential technology to address a global grand challenge?

Last week on February 6th, applications for the first SingularityU Portugal Global Impact Challenge (GIC) closed with 56 completed applications, just over the country average for the first GIC program. For Portugal, a country of just ten million people, that is a very respectable number and one we feel very comfortable with.

What was perhaps the most remarkable was that the applications received, came from all over Portugal and so far, demonstrate excellent quality of ideas, proposals and solutions to transform major industries. The applicants not only address some of the world’s grand challenges in education, environment and governance but we have also received innovative ideas for solutions in health, an increasing field in Portugal but also Space and much more.

The majority of the ideas come not only from entrepreneurs, but also from intrapreneurs, an expression coined for those working in large organizations, involved in innovative, seemingly riskier startup projects. And as hoped the bulk of solutions submitted make use of exponential technologies, the most popular being blockchain but also machine learning, artificial intelligence, biotech, nanotechnologies and virtual & augmented reality.  

During the course of this week the applications will be assessed by selected community evaluators and Singularity representatives on criteria such as the use of exponential technologies, impact and scalability and the profile and ability of the candidates submitting the idea. The selection process will not be easy but soon the first finalists of the 2018 SingularityU Portugal Global Impact Challenge will be announced.

The Global Impact Challenge is just the first in a series of activities that will catalyze and build the SingularityU Portugal community and assemble talented individuals and groups able to address and transform major industry and change the lives for billions. Beta-i, Cascais Municipality and Nova School of Business and Economics organizers of the 2018 SingularityU Portugal GIC and partners, Cascais Municipality, and Fundação Alfredo de Sousa invite all to take part, attend and meet the finalists during the SingularityU Portugal GIC Pitch Event on the February 26, 2018 at Centro Cultural de Cascais starting at 2PM.

To register please do so here. We look forward to seeing you there. The winner receives a seat at the SU Ventures Incubator Program, a 10-week program that fosters the development of viable start-ups (for profit or not-for profit) at the Singularity headquarters NASA Research Park in California.

199 days after, Singularity comes to Portugal

199 days after, Singularity comes to Portugal

The first 20 years of our lives, we pretty much spend our time learning. First the basics (sleeping, eating, walking), than at school & university. It shapes who we are and what we will become and has a profound impact in our future. For something that important, the education area hasn’t changed that much over the last 100 years.

We believe this is so important that we decided to create a new education area that focuses on improving, for people from 7 to 77 years old, the learning experience. But above all, an area that has the vision to change education as a whole.

About 10 years ago I met Peter Diamandis when he was my teacher at the Space Studies Program (a 10-week project-based learning program with 150 people from 50 nationalities). That was the first time I heard about this new project that was being designed called the Singularity University.

Ever since, I’ve been following the approach and growth of the project worldwide and was excited to see last year the birth of a new initiative to create Country Partnerships from Singularity around the world.

This initiative led me to investigate the topic and understand it to the point of going to Singularity this Summer and decide that this was a project worth pursuing on a bigger scale. So after returning, I began building a strong team by partnering with Cascais Municipality and NovaSBE to bring this home.

The first step starts today, with the launch of the Portugal Global Impact Challenge and the announcement of the SingularityU Portugal Summit in Cascais on October 2018.

But this is just the first step…


Ricardo Marvão
Co-Founder and Chief Education Officer, Beta-i