Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the Exchange? 

The Exchange is a global marketplace for innovations that address humanity’s greatest challenges. The Exchange brings together innovators, funders, investors, researchers, innovation-support organizations, and others to identify, support, and scale solutions that solve critical development problems. All innovations, whether a physical device or an innovative process or approach, are welcome.  The Exchange helps create a full picture of the innovations available to solve humanity’s greatest challenges. The Exchange is innovation agnostic. Instead of promoting a particular innovation, we help people access existing ideas and resources to evaluate and identify the right solution for them.   

Q: What is the purpose of the Exchange? 

The Exchange aims to connect innovators with the resources, contacts, and information they need to grow their innovation and improve lives around the world, as well as to give anyone who wants to make a difference the ability to leverage their skills and resources. The Exchange provides a place for those searching for innovative solutions to find, compare, and connect with the right solutions for their challenges.

Q: Aren’t there a number of websites that do the same thing as the Exchange? 

The Exchange is proud to work with and amplify other platforms that focus on specific sectors, regions, or aligned networks.  Many have shared their content with the Exchange and we continue to discuss integration with new partners. The Exchange does not replace these complementary platforms--it aggregates their content and directs users to the original source. Based on our collaboration with these other platforms, we realized that the Exchange needed to:

  1. Provide a brand and innovation agnostic approach.
  2. Be a place to see all innovations in one place to understand the unbiased and unfiltered breadth and depth of available solutions, whether that was from an individual innovator or a for profit corporation. 
  3. Not only list innovations, but also shed light on the broader context surrounding an innovation, such as: Who was using it? Where? What did they say about it? Would they recommend it? 
  4. Create a positive environment for competition where people could compare different innovations, and where innovators would constantly be driven to iterate and pursue greater excellence for their solutions, being informed by what else was out there. 
  5. Help innovators build their teams and connect with others who could truly help them, beyond their original funder or donor. 
  6. Make applying and accessing resources easier, and expose innovators to more opportunities, money, and resources. 
  7. Create a free market for development ideas, where people looking for solutions could feature their needs directly to innovators.

Q: Can I give feedback on what I think should be changed and/or improved about the Exchange?

YES! The Global Innovation Exchange is a global good platform led by active community participation. We look to our member community, and the public, for feedback to make the Exchange incrementally better every day. We iterate, pivot and improve. Tell us what you think at info@globalinnovationexchange.org or use the feedback tool on the right side of the page.

Q: Who should use the Exchange? 

The Exchange is for innovators, funders, researchers, innovation-support organizations, and others interested in identifying, supporting, scaling, and solving development challenges. Entrepreneurs, start-up organizations, businesses, investors, foundations, donors, non-governmental organizations, governments, religious groups, universities, research centers, think tanks, students, tinkerers, and makers are all invited to participate in the Exchange. 

Q: Can a group or organization participate? 

Yes, groups or organizations are welcome and even encouraged to participate. To create a group or organization profile, an individual must first develop an individual profile. 

Q: How can I join the Exchange? 

Joining the Exchange is easy. Start by creating an individual profile at: http://www.globalinnovationexchange.org/user/register.

Q: How much work is involved for innovators to participate? 

The amount of time you spend on the Exchange is completely up to you. The initial work to set up your user profile should take very little time, anywhere from 5 minutes to complete a basic profile to 15 minutes for a more robust profile with photos or videos, relevant resources, and links to partner and funder profiles on the Exchange.

After setting up a profile, the Exchange will do much of the work for you. Based on your areas of interest and needs, the Exchange Personal Dashboard will highlight content like innovations, members, funding opportunities, resources, communities, and other content that is relevant to you. 

Beyond the initial setup you can spend time browsing funding opportunities, checking out other innovations, participating or curating communities, posting feedback on other innovations, and participating in Exchange-sponsored webinars, expert interviews, and competitions. 

Q: Who are the founding partners? 

The founding partners include the U.S. Global Development Lab at USAID, AusAid, KOICA and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  We also engaged over 100+ organizations such as donors, foundations, universities, research organizations, non-governmental organizations, and news media, to co-create the Exchange and leverage the unqiue expertise of each organization. View a comprehensive and growing list of partners. The Exchange is open to everyone, so become a partner today. 

Q: How can I join as a partner on the Exchange? 

To learn how to join the Exchange as a partner, please contact: partner@globalinnovationexchange.com.

Q: What are your plans for future functionality? 

We will be adding functionality based on emerging content and member needs. Planned updates include:

  • Updates and email notifications of new content relevant to you based on your interests and needs
  • Notifications of the latest funding that you qualify for
  • Notifications of new programs, people, and resources that are relevant to each user based on their profile
  • Transactional functionality: the ability for anyone to directly fund your research through the Exchange
  • Improved dashboard with news feed with updates from the content and members you are following
  • Matchmaking you with experts and resources based on your needs

Q: Can I block others from seeing my profile information? 

All profiles that are created on the Exchange are publically available. Private profiles may be introduced in the future, but please only share information with us that you are comfortable with others finding.  

Q: What are system requirements? 

The Exchange has been developed with users from low-bandwidth communities in mind. Users should be able to access the site from any tablet, mobile, or device anywhere in the world. Contact us if you are experiencing issues accessing the site. 

Q: In what countries is the Exchange accessible? 

The Exchange is accessible in virtually every country in the world. 

Q: I see something that I don't think is accurate on the Exchange. What should I do?

Please contact us at info@globalinnovationexchange.org or click on "Flag this as inappropriate" which is located on most content in the Exchange. We encourage you to provide feedback or ask questions by using the Comment section or by sending a direct message to the content owner.

Q: I think I found a bug! How to report a fix request? 

Oh my! We sincerely apologize for any bugs you may come across during your time on the Exchange. To report a bug and request a fix, email info@globalinnovationexchange.com

Q: I have a great idea for a new functionality! How do I request additional functionality be added to the Exchange? 

We love a great idea! Please submit your suggestions and comments here: info@globalinnovationexchange.com.

Q: I want to join the Exchange Volunteer Army! How do I do that?

Contact team@globalinnovationexchange.com.

Q: I want to curate a community on the Exchange, who do I contact?

Contact curate@globalinnovationexchange.com.

Q: I have a bunch of innovations I want to add to the Exchange, how do I do a "mass upload" or automated content loading?

Awesome, we can't wait to feature your innovations, contact transfer@globalinnovationexchange.com.