Global growth program helping businesses to succeed in the humanitarian market

In 2017, Innovation Norway had the pleasure of implementing the new internationalization program called Global Growth, for companies with solutions that can contribute towards global challenges. Over the past year, the participating companies have worked their way through slums, global financial institutions, the UN, and much more to improve their prerequisites for success in this complex international market.

Live test of blockchain innovations to help women and girls in humanitarian settings

Last week, UN Women conducted a live test simulation of blockchain solutions from seven different companies at the UN Women headquarters in New York City. The aim is to find solutions that can empower women and girls in humanitarian settings. The Norwegian tech company Blockbonds was among the companies presenting their solution at the blockchain lab.

Welcome to the Norwegian showroom at DIHAD

We hope to see you at DIHAD this year and invite you to meet the highly specialized Norwegian suppliers at Stand E-11. Experience a great display of innovative solutions within water and sanitation, shelter and protection, sustainable energy, communication, health, nutrition and food.

UNICEF funding opportunities for startups

The UNICEF Innovation Fund is looking to make $50-90K equity-free investments to provide early stage (seed) finance to for-profit  technology start-ups that have the potential to benefit humanity.

If you’ve got a start-up registered in one of UNICEF’s programme countries and have a working, open source prototype (or you are willing to make it open-source) showing promising results, the UNICEF Innovation Fund is looking for you.

Can blockchain disrupt the aid industry?

Blockchain is an emerging technology which have received great attention in the humanitarian and development sector over the last year. NOREPS has been a pioneer in financing blockchain projects and was invited by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to share experiences and recommendations last week. What is blockchain and what are the possibilities and challenges in using this technology in humanitarian aid and development?

ACAPS Humanitarian Overview

The Humanitarian Overview: An analysis of key crises into 2018 focuses primarily on the crises that are expected to deteriorate in the coming year and outlines the likely corresponding humanitarian needs. Download the full report below.

Apply for WFP innovation accelerator

Apply to World Food Programme's innovation programme to participate in their week-long bootcamp and gain access to a 3-6 month sprint programme. Selected projects will get access to  mentorship, financial support and access to the world’s largest humanitarian organisation, its operations, partners and technical experts. Submit your application by 2 January 2018 to be considered for the March Bootcamp and the Summer Sprint Programme in 2018.

UN Technology Innovation lab opens in Finland

The establishment of the first United Nations Technology Innovation Lab (UNTIL) will be launched on Thursday 30 November in a Slush side event, co-organized by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and the Office for Information and Communication and Technologies of the United Nations. The first lab will be housed at Aalto University campus, in A Grid, the new centre for growth companies. Two more labs will be launched in 2017 in Asia and Africa, and the global network continues to grow in 2018.

What does it mean for rural health clinics to have stable access to power?

Innovation Norway and the Norwegian solar energy company Differ travelled to Zambia for a series of site visits. Differ have earlier this year installed energy solutions in various health clinics  as a part of the UNDP Solar 4 Health Program. The site visits were filled with powerful impressions and a strong sense of urgency. What does it mean for rural health clinics to have stable access to power?

Vision 2030: project draft competition

Innovation Norway invite companies that consider expanding in the UN-, humanitarian- and development market to participate in our competition for pre-project funds in Vision 2030. The competition is aimed at innovative projects focusing on achieving the UN's sustainable development goals in health and education. (Article available in Norwegian). 

Aidex 2017 - regained relevance

In line with the Sustainable Development Goals, engagement between the humanitarian community and the private sector is vital to drive innovation and increase effectiveness in humanitarian response. NOREPS did not attend AidEx last year so the expectations this year were hesitant – would AidEx regain its relevance after a couple of years with declining attendance from NOREPS companies?

Cash programming and smart aid

Technology makes humanitarian aid more effective and efficient. Elisabeth Fosseli Olsen in NOREPS/Innovation Norway believes financial support through cash transfer programming will be central in humanitarian aid in the future. Article from NRC available in Norwegian.

Humanitarian - private partnership and innovation

Partnership and humanitarian innovation was the overarching theme last week, as the Permanent Mission of Norway welcomed nine Norwegian companies to Geneva for a capacity-building course.

UNOPS 2016 annual statistical report on United Nations procurement

UNOPS has just launched the 2016 annual statistical report on United Nations Procurement. The report provides data and analysis on the goods and services procured by the United Nations system in support of its operations around the world. The report can be downloaded below.

Norwegian businesses explore private sectors’ potential to fight poverty in Nairobi

In the first week of June, the Innovation Norway Global Growth program focusing on the humanitarian and development market visited Nairobi, Kenya. The goal of the fieldtrip was to gain a deeper understanding of peoples’ needs and to get an idea of how innovation should be organized in the challenging humanitarian- and development market.

Hackathon for social impact

In May UN Women and Innovation Norway welcomed hackers, humanitarian workers, blockchain experts and innovators to a 36-hour hackathon on how blockchain technology can give refugees a secure, digital identity.

Oslo Hackathon explores new technology to empower women in humanitarian crisis

Imagine waking up one day and realizing that the place you’ve called home all your life, is no longer safe. As millions of refugees and displaced people set out to find a new life across and within borders, they lack some of the most basic services and infrastructure that make daily life possible.

UNOPS Possibilities Portal

The UNOPS Possibilities Portal invites small- and medium-sized enterprises to demontstrate how your product or service can enhance the possibilities of UNOPS's projects, withe the aim of improving the results of UNOPS's work around the world, in service of people in need.

2017 call for proposals- Humanitarian innovation and preparedness grant

The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has given Innovation Norway the mandate to manage NOK 30 million to humanitarian innovation and preparedness initiatives in 2017. The goal of the scheme is to stimulate innovation projects and strengthen humanitarian emergency preparedness with focus on supporting the Sustainable Development Goals. The application deadline was October 15th, so the call is now closed. 

We are launching NOREPS 2.0

The number of companies in the NOREPS network has grown substantially in the last few years and we are therefore launching a new structure for our services to ensure we deliver the most suitable offerings to all participants. We call the new upgrade NOREPS 2.0.

16 Norwegian companies presented innovative solutions at DIHAD

A total of 16 Norwegian companies were present at the Dubai International Humanitarian Aid & Development Conference & Exhibition - DIHAD 21-13 March 2017. DIHAD is the largest humanitarian event in the Middle East where the companies presented a number of innovative and sustainable solutions to the UN and the humanitarian market.

News on the Solar4Health-project

NOREPS supports UNDP and the Government of Zambia through the Solar 4 Health project with renewable solutions for health facilities. Follow the links below to read more about the project.

Norwegian companies taking more of the UN market

Norwegian companies are increasing their share in the global market for equipment and services to humanitarian aid. Super absorbing bed sheets and solar lamps are among Norwegian products which are successful on the UN market. Article available in Norwegian.

Exploring the needs to find effective solutions

A delegation of six company representatives and staff from NOREPS/ Innovation Norway visited Zambia this spring to explore further needs in the Solar4Health-project managed by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). The project aims to install solar energy-solutions and low-consumption appliances to health facilities in 26 countries.

A historical innovation agreement is signed

The historical innovation agreement between Innovation Norway and UN Women was signed in Trondheim on March 7th.  The agreement will connect the needs that UN Women identify in their humanitarian work with innovative Norwegian solutions. The goal is to encourage the private sector to develop smarter and more efficient solutions that can help empower women and contribute towards the world’s sustainability goals.

From speeches to practice

On the morning of the Private Sector Conference on Internationalization and Development, Innovation Norway in cooperation with Oslo Ed-tech cluster held a practical breakfast workshop on the topic of education in emergencies. 

- The world needs the private sector on board

Says Kristin Skogen Lund, CEO in NHO when she opened the Business Conference for Internationalization and Development. The conference is the most important meeting place for businesses, humanitarian organizations and public actors.

Article in Norwegian.

New program to strengthen Norwegian solutions to global challenges

Do you want to gain greater understanding of the humanitarian and development market and how your company can contribute to solving global challenges and at the same time creating new business opportunities? Would you like to explore how doing good can be good business? 

Market opportunities in the UN City, Copenhagen - new report

The UN City in Copenhagen holds 9 UN agencies plus the nearby UNICEF depot, and is a central hub for UNs global procurement. This recent report provides an overview of the agencies present in the city, how and what they buy, and how Norwegian suppliers can contribute to innovation, partnerships and sustainability. 

How to do business with the United Nations

Did you attend the UN Procurement Seminar in Copenhagen this month and would like to recap on the information from the stage? Or perhaps you did not get the chance to attend and want to learn more about how to do business with the UN? Now you can find all the presentations on the UNGM website. 

Norway doubled sale to the UN in 2015

More than 50 Norwegian businesses attended UNs Nordic Procurement Seminar in Copenhagen the 15-16th June. The record high participation reflects the increased relevance of the UN market for Norwegian companies. 

From prepositioning to innovation

Bistandsaktuelt is covering NOREPS participation at the World Humanitarian Summit. The article highlights the shift from prepositioning to innovation, and how Norwegian suppliers aim to contribute to a more innovative humanitarian sector.

Innovation Norway/NOREPS at the World Humanitarian Summit

Eight Norwegian suppliers of innovative emergency solutions were present together with Innovation Norway and NOREPS in Istanbul last week at the world's first humanitarian summit which was convened by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Attending UN summit on humanitarian assistance

Eight Norwegian suppliers of emergency solutions are present together with Innovation Norway and NOREPS when top executives from around the world meet in Istanbul this week on the world's first humanitarian summit - World Humanitarian Summit

Article available in Norwegian

Solar powered water pump for refugees in South Sudan

An innovative solution providing sustainable water supply for 25 000 refugees in South Sudan's Maban region was officially opened in February 2016. The plant is provided by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), powered by the Norwegian supplier W. Giertsen Energy Solutions and co-funded by NOREPS.

Anti-corruption and transparency

How can we help companies and organisations prevent corruption in their humanitarian work? Transparency International in collaboration with NOREPS arranged an anti-corruption seminar in February 2016.

The NOREPS-network responds to the Nepal Earthquake 2015

A wide range of Norwegian suppliers have delivered equipment and services to the UN and International organizations as part of the emergency response after the earthquake in Nepal. Norwegian companies have a lot to offer in complex emergency situations. Especially solutions in sustainable energy, shelter and protection, health, IT and telecommunications, nutrition / food, logistics, water, sanitation and hygiene are demanded. Most of the emergency relief items are finanzed and pre-stored through the Norwegian Emergency Preparedness System, NOREPS. 
Read the article... (only available in Norwegian)

Visit from WFP and UNHRD: Network meeting on humanitarian innovation

The startup wave and the digital shift meets large innovation needs in the humanitarian sector. Global challenges have increasingly large consequences for society and the humanitarian organisations gets decrease in budgets. Innovation Norway invited the UN agencies World Food Program and Emergency Stocks Piling (UNHRD) and gathered almost 100 people from humanitarian and private sector with the overall goal of stimulating humanitarian innovation.

(Article in Norwegian)