Global water technology company, Xylem (NYSE:XYL), is expanding its investment in youth innovation to empower the next generation to solve the world’s greatest water challenges. The diverse program, including over 60 events in 2021, builds on Xylem’s 25 year sponsorship of the Stockholm Junior Water Prize with innovation competitions, in addition to community outreach initiatives and a global innovation incubator program.
The winner of the 2021 Stockholm Junior Water Prize will be announced at a ceremony on August 24, during World Water Week. The annual competition brings together students from 40 countries, and has enabled an estimated 125,000 youth innovators to bring forward solutions to urgent water challenges since the competition began in 1996.
“With water challenges intensifying by the day, we are investing in the next generation of water innovators,” said Patrick Decker, Xylem’s Chief Executive Officer. “Young people have a leading role to play in putting water issues on the agenda – and solving them. They inspire us, and the world will gain from their passion and creativity.
"We invest in platforms like the Stockholm Junior Water Prize and other initiatives that provide students with the opportunity to advocate and innovate for a sustainable water future,” Decker added. “The talent of the students participating in this year’s Stockholm Junior Water Prize is simply inspiring – and a great reminder of the energy and commitment, across generations, to solve the world’s greatest water challenges.
“Stockholm Junior Water Prize celebrates young people’s determination to be part of a better future,” said Torgny Holmgren, Executive Director at Stockholm International Water Institute. “The passion and ingenuity that all participants show is truly inspiring and an important contribution to the global water world. At SIWI, we are proud to host the Prize and organize this event in close partnership with Xylem.”
SJWP is one of 60 youth-oriented events Xylem invests in, around the world, under the banner of Xylem Ignite, its dedicated student development program targeting students worldwide. Since the program’s inception last year, Xylem Ignite has already engaged more than 6,600 students in creative water-oriented hackathons and sustainability events, including 650+ participants from 47 countries competing in the Xylem Global Student Innovation Challenge. The challenges included: reducing the water footprint of everyday products; gamifying water quality education; predicting urban floods; and designing a water system for life on Mars.
Participants can also apply to be a part of the Xylem Ignite Innovation Incubator. The Incubator program provides up to 12 months’ support for participants to scale up their innovations and advance them toward market readiness.