New innovation challenge to be unveiled at high-level Washington event

    The U.S. Agency for International Development will launch an initiative focused on promoting clean and affordable energy solution for the agriculture sector. Photo by: Morgana Wingard / USAID / CC BY-NC

    On June 12 (Tuesday), the U.S. Agency for International Development and major partner donors will launch another multiyear initiative that aims to encourage game-changing solutions to pressing global development problems.

    The focus this time is on promoting clean and affordable energy solutions for the developing world’s agriculture sector. Dubbed “Powering Agriculture: An Energy Grand Challenge for Development,” this initiative is part of the USAID-led Grand Challenge program, which has previously focused on maternal health and child education.

    USAID’s partners for Powering Agriculture include the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, Duke Energy, the African Development Bank and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    The initiative’s launch is part of a high-level convention to be hosted by USAID June 11-13 in Washington, D.C. The inaugural Frontiers in Development forum will feature a by-invitation only delegation of 700 government, corporate and nongovernmental thought leaders and development experts. Confirmed speakers include the presidents of Liberia, Kosovo and Malawi, heads of GlaxoSmithKline PLC and Citigroup, and a number of U.S. politicians and celebrities.

    Frontiers in Development aims to encourage “forward-looking, provocative discussion and debate” on various development topics. The first day, for instance, will focus on finding the right balance among development, diplomacy and security as well as challenges of development in conflict states. The succeeding days will cover topics such as health care delivery, innovative development approaches, technology and development, food security, and the future of development assistance.

    The forum is a partnership between USAID, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, William & Flora Hewlett FoundationMacArthur Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation.

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    About the author

    • Ivy Mungcal

      As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.

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