For its first piloting phase, the SDGia focused on two of the most pressing issues faced by displaced population, namely the lack of sanitation and personal identification. The big problemswere defined as Livelihood Opportunities and Access to Basic Services and Clean Water and Sanitation. The call specifically focused also on two challenges Non-Sewage Portable Toilet and Sanitation Systems and and Digital ID. The challenge owners, namely UNDP, Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Eczacıbaşı Holding.

The SDGia managed to attract 150 applications from start-ups in different stages of development, from those in the validation step to those in the growth phase. The applications received were from 35 different countries and 11 Turkish provinces as 25 start-ups succeeded in the initial selection process.

Entrepreneurs were invited to a 6 day “Pre-Accelerator BootCamp” session in Istanbul and Ankara from the 6th to the 11st of July 2019. The pre-acceleration process ended with the SDG Impact Accelerator “Pitching Day” on the 26th of July, where 10 start-ups proceeded to the subsequent accelerator round and each received up to USD 14,000 in grant funding.

The acceleration period culminated with a “Showcase Event” on September 11th in Ankara and a final “Demo Day” on September 13th in Istanbul. Startups from Netherlands, Jordan, Palestine, United States of America, India, Turkey, Kenya, and Rwanda presented their products developed in the 2-month accelerator period to a selected audience of international impact investors and potential private and public partners. At last, one graduate from each cohort were selected to attend the UN General Assembly in September 2019 in New York and the Global Refugee Forum (GRF) in December 2019 in Geneva.

  • Mustafa Osman Turan
    Mustafa Osman Turan
    Co-Chair of the Project Board (MFA)
  • Seher Alacacı Arıner
    Seher Alacacı Arıner
    Co-Chair of the Project Board (UNDP CO)
  • Gülseren Çelik
    Gülseren Çelik
    Alternate Co-Chair of the Project Board (MFA)
  • Pelin Rodoplu
    Pelin Rodoplu
    UNDP Portfolio Manager
  • Asif Abbas
    Asif Abbas
    Member of the Project Board (BMGF)
  • Duygu Ercan Mörel
    Duygu Ercan Mörel
    Alternate Member of the Project Board (Globesight)
  • Melih Özsöz
    Melih Özsöz
    Member of the Project Board (LİMAK)
  • Boğaç Şimşir
    Boğaç Şimşir
    Member of the Project Board (Eczacıbaşı)
  • Nils Grede
    Nils Grede
    Member of the Project Board (WFP)
  • Başak Saral
    Başak Saral
    Independent Member of the Project Board (pro bono)
  • Nouf Mohammed Al-Kaabi
    Nouf Mohammed Al-Kaabi
    Member of the Project Board (QFFD)
  • Fahad Al-Dehaimi
    Fahad Al-Dehaimi
    Alternate Member of the Project Board (QFFD)
  • Sun Gil Kim
    Sun Gil Kim
    Sanitation Consultant (BMGF)
  • Houman Haddad
    Houman Haddad
    Digital ID Consultant (WFP)
  • Cheryl Edison
    Cheryl Edison
    Global Business Strategy Consultant (Pro Bono) | Founding Partner & CEO, Edison International
  • Dicle Yurdakul
    Dicle Yurdakul
    Systems Lab Consultant (Pro Bono)
  • Tuba Atabey
    Tuba Atabey
    Systems Lab Consultant (Pro Bono)
© 2021 SDGia