We’re launching something new! We’re starting the Technovation Idea Lab, a place where the Technovation team and global community will come together to pilot test new program ideas and approaches with a select group of students, volunteers, and our staff.

The Technovation Idea Lab will allow us to understand how to slow or stop learning loss for students when they are out of school. Through these smaller-scale pilot tests, we’ll be able to learn and adapt more quickly and then build what we’ve learned into our core programs so we can better serve our participants and the amazing volunteers who lead and mentor them.

Technovation Idea Lab – Our First Pilot 

The first Technovation Idea Lab pilot will run between July 27 and August 28 in partnership with UNESCO’s Covid-19 Global Education Coalition and learning organizations around the world.

The pilot focuses on artificial intelligence, and will be open to girls ages 10-18 living in India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Kenya, Brazil and Mexico – participation is free, but all participants and volunteer leaders must have the ability to access Google Classroom on the internet.

Participating girls will learn what artificial intelligence (AI) is, how it works, and make a plan for an AI invention that solves a problem they identify in their community. They will also learn how to build their own AI model. Girls will be able to interact and learn with mentors from around the world and other students from their country. Mentors will include volunteers from Ericsson, Uber (both members of UNESCO’s COVID-19 Global Education Coalition) and SAP , who will support and encourage students in several different capacities. Based on interest and availability mentors will help answer participants’ questions as they work through the curriculum, hold office hours to connect with students and share insights about their career, or create and share video and learning resources to help motivate participants. The Micro:bit Educational Foundation has also donated micro:bits, devices with open-source software that teach creativity and coding, for girls who have made exceptional contributions over the five-week programme.

The goal of this pilot is for us to find better ways to engage and support girls in self-directed technology entrepreneurship programs while also involving industry mentors who can help motivate girls to persist through a multi-week program. 

Why this pilot, and why now?

A lot of factors impact education and learning, especially in moments of uncertainty, and we want to be sure we’re doing all we can to learn and apply our knowledge to best serve learners and the communities in which they live. We believe this work is especially critical now, when challenges like Covid-19 affect us globally, and some of us more than others.

A recent UN report warned that girls and women are in the crosshairs of this pandemic,” said Tara Chklovski, CEO and Founder of Technovation. “Through our collaboration with UNESCO, as well as community and corporate partners all over the world, we’re committed to doing all we can to support vulnerable groups and ensure the progress humanity has made over the past 50 years in education and equality are not wiped out. We believe providing girls with interesting, project-based curriculum that empowers them to contribute to and lead change in their communities using technology like artificial intelligence – which is already integrating into and reshaping our lives – is one way to combat the negative impact this pandemic is having on education.”

We are proud to be partnering with UNESCO’s COVID-19 Global Education Coalition to launch this pilot, and grateful for their involvement to help us reach more students and learn how to better support girls in online education efforts moving forward

“Technology has played a dominant role in education throughout this pandemic that has exposed deep digital and gender divides. Now is the time to empower girls with the confidence and skills to harness technology and support their schools and communities to build back better and differently,” said Stefania Giannini, UNESCO’s Assistant Director-General for Education. “Our collaboration with Technovation under the Global Education Coalition opens the way for girls to be creative leaders and have a say in shaping more inclusive and gender-responsive education systems for the future.”

We are also immensely proud to be partnering with organizations that include Edufun Technik, CRUIZ BIZ, Brainfacio, Data Science Nigeria, Odyssey Educational Foundation, and Godigitech in Nigeria, Safaricom, Bliss Innovations, and Laikipia University in Kenya, the Pakistan Science Club, Girl Coders Pakistan, SCSPEB, and The Lab School in Pakistan, HaritaDhara Research Development and Education Foundation and Talent Unlimited in India, Instituto Paramitas in Brazil, and Scientax, Icommunity, Mentoralia AC, Women Who Code Mérida, ITESO, University of Guadalajara, CETYS, Impact Mayeb, Iconmunity, and Instituto de Innovación Mentes en Movimiento in Mexico, as well as incredibly dedicated individuals leading the program in their local communities.

Join us! 

Students from Brazil, Mexico, India, Pakistan, Kenya, and Nigeria can register here until August 4th, 2020.

If you are a community leader from one of the 6 countries listed above, or an industry professional from any country and you’re interested in volunteering with the program, let us know how you’re interested by filling out this form for leaders or this form for industry professionals.