Leverage your AI expertise for social good and win Rs 5 lakh cash prize, a chance to work on a POC with Maharashtra Govt and more

5th Feb 2019
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Government of Maharashtra

Government of Maharashtra

Do you have an Artificial Intelligence-led solution that can:

  • Provide cancer screening and treatment services in semi-urban and rural areas?
  • Monitor crop health and provide real time advice to farmers?
  • Intuitively manage the distribution of teachers across public schools based on supply-demand gaps and teacher preferences and abilities?
  • Optimise fleet management for railways and prevent hold-ups and accidents due to technical failures?
  • Monitor general security to prevent potential crimes in urban areas to increase safety?
  • Assist those with physical disabilities to use biometric scanning rather than signatures or passwords to access government services?

Or any such solution in areas that can have a social impact?


Then participate in the Government of Maharashtra’s Artificial Intelligence Innovation Challenge 2019.

Apply here.

Artificial Intelligence for social good

Startups, MSMEs, and enterprises that have unique AI-based solutions for social problems are invited to apply for the AI Innovation Challenge and collaborate with the Maharashtra government to work towards creating a safer and more sustainable future.

While the challenge has seven key focus areas – Healthcare, Agriculture/ Food Processing, Education, Smart Mobility and Transport, Smart Cities and Infrastructure, Water Management and Conservation, Accessibility for Differently-Abled, organisations with innovative solutions across other allied domains are also welcome to apply. The Challenge outlines a proposed list of themes with indicative problem statements, and applicants are free to showcase how their AI-led solutions can change the situation.

Who can participate

A key mandate for participation is that the solution designed for tackling social problems should be relevant and feasible for implementation as part of the proof of concept with the Government of Maharashtra. Additionally, the participating startup, MSME, or enterprise should be working towards innovation, development or improvement of products, processes or services using AI as their base technology.

It would be an added advantage if the organisations have previously worked on an implementation programme or a pilot with other Indian state governments or with notable private or public organisations.

The Challenge is open for startups, MSMEs, and enterprises based all over India.

How to participate

To participate, businesses need to submit a proposal detailing the solution and the feasibility of implementation, along with the registration form. Shortlisted applicants will be given a chance to pitch their ideas to the Government of Maharashtra on March 2, 2019, in Mumbai.

What’s in it for you?

Winners of the AI Innovation Challenge will be given an opportunity to collaborate with the Government of Maharashtra for conducting a POC in the state. This can act as a stepping stone for startups to explore opportunities for partnership in other government-led projects and also showcase the tangible impact the organisation’s AI expertise can achieve.

That’s not all. Two organisations, whose ideas have the most potential to create a positive social impact, stand a chance to win a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh each as well as an opportunity to collaborate with the Hub at Wadhwani AI.

AWS and Intel have also come together as a joint innovation partner for the challenge. These companies have been building technologies to harness the capabilities of AI to create positive change. Now, they seek to provide a platform through which they nurture and challenge participants – from data to offering use cases and insights. All interested contestants will have access to these resources as they innovate with AI technology for social good.

Why a challenge like the AI Innovation Challenge is of significance to the technology and startup ecosystem in India

What was once limited to niche and futuristic use cases such as self-driving cars, robotic surgery, defence, satellite imagery, is being applied across everyday use cases today – from streaming music, navigating traffic, to online product recommendations and personalised alerts in mobile banking – AI is everywhere. It is no longer considered an intimidating technology.

Today, as AI continues to become omnipresent, there is more than enough scope for it to be used for social good. Yet, a key challenge remains -- dearth of professionals in the AI-led social sector. The other major challenge, as with any technology which has the potential for social good, is that its success is dependent on whether a large group of stakeholders is willing to adopt and deploy it on-ground.

It is here that the Government of Maharashtra is taking a much-needed positive step by taking ownership of the deployment of AI for social good, much ahead of their counterparts elsewhere. The AI Innovation Challenge is one such effort in this direction and addresses the above mentioned challenges. The initiative not only puts the spotlight on harnessing the potential of AI to address societal challenges, but also encourages students, engineers, computer science professionals and companies with AI talent to explore, adopt, deploy and high-impact AI solutions that have meaningful on-ground impact.

The Government of Maharashtra has opened the doors for a better society enabled by AI. It’s time for startups, enterprises and MSMEs to walk the talk through active participation. Apply for the Artificial Intelligence Innovation Challenge 2019. The last date for applying is February 15, 2019.

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