The SDG Accelerator provides support to GTI student projects to scale-up through the different innovation phases, aiming to achieve a social impact and to allow students to learn about innovation as a discipline, while developing their own ideas.

From idea conceptualisation to prototyping, validation, implementation and achieving a social impact, students from different disciplines work together on solving global issues, framed by expert mentors from International Organisations and NGOs.

The SDG Accelerator is established under two main pillars:

Education: students learn how to do innovation by developing their own SDG projects. Providing support to move from the different innovation phases allows them to learn how a project from a very early stage of idea conceptualization can be developed and implemented to achieve a social impact. Learning to work in multi-disciplinary environment, assessing the potential impact of ideas, stablishing collaboration with other institutions, designing and implementing prototypes, or managing the projects, would be just some examples of the learning outcomes acquired while working on their projects.

Social Impact: students’ projects are inspired by the challenges presented by International Organizations. Those challenges address real problem where solutions are currently needed. Combining the strength of multi-disciplinary teams of students selected from all around the world, the mentoring coming from International Organizations and the Sino-Suisse innovation ecosystem, and the support from the GTI accelerator set up the ground for a wide range of social innovation projects to achieve SDGs.


How does it work?

Students working on projects have periodic coaching sessions regarding the social innovation process. The students use their own ideas as case studies for the coaching activities. Periodically, they will be invited to present their progress in front of a panel of experts. In those periodic presentations, students will show the progress and needs. The expert would evaluate how the needs could be covered within the GTI Accelerator program.

In addition, students are free to apply for funds at any time. Applying for fund will require to fill the request form and to present in front of a panel of experts, who will make the final decision.


Application Criteria:

Impact. How does the proposed project address a SDG? How does the proposed project related with SDG Indicators and metrics, and what are the expected outcomes?

Feasibility. Does the team have a well-­developed, realistic plan to execute on the proposal? Have the team identified the right partners and domain experts needed for the implementation?

The needs. What is preventing your project to move forward? How much would progress your project by covering the current needs? How much fund would that require?


Submission guidelines

Please reply to the following questions (max 120 words per answer):

  1. What is the name of the project?
  2. Who are the people already involved in the project? (name, institution, email, role in the project)

The Problem

  1. Tell us about the problem you are trying to solve? Use metrics where possible: e.g., approximately how many people are affected, and how does the problem impact their lives?
  2. To which SDGs does this project related?

The Solution

  1. Tell us in few lines how your solution would address the problem?
  2. What other approaches have been tried before? What makes your solution better?
  3. In an ideal case, what the expected impact of your project in 5 years?
  4. In which stage is your project? Which are the major achievements to date?
  5. Which geographical areas will benefit of your solution?

The SDGs and DataSet

  1. How your idea related with SDG/metric/indicators?
  2. Which data set are you consuming or producing?
  3. Is this dataset related with any SDG indicator?

Impact and Risk

  1. How will you measure and evaluate your impact/success?
  2. Which are the key partner to ensure the impact of your solution?
  3. How do you plan to sustain and grow the impact of your project?
  4. What are the major risk in this project and how would you mitigate them?

Needs and budgets

  1. Which are the main needs preventing your project to move forward?
  2. How much fund would you need to cover the main needs of your project?


For more information on the GTI Accelerator, please contact Jose Luis Fernandez Marquez (