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Breaking News! USAID Grand Challenge for Development with Facebook

By Wayan Vota on April 1, 2015


After extensive analysis, USAID has determined that poor people in the country of Africa suffer from a lack of things. According to the World Bank, 414 million people, almost half the population, are people are living on less than $1.25-a-day, with no hope of affording even the most basic Apple iPhone.

Yet according to a recent USAID study on tremendous development success of US policies for the American poor, Africans are only poor because they don’t own enough Internet of Things (IoT) things. USAID is committed to pro-poor, market-based approaches, and has developed its newest Grand Challenge for Development to bring Black Friday-level enthusiasm for convenience electronics to poor people’s lives across Africa.

USAID has engaged in an innovative public-private partnership (PPP) with Facebook to leverage the well-established and proven technologies of drones and 3D printers to airdrop prosperity to Africa in the next Grand Challenge for Development (GCD). The United States Agency for International Development International Drones for Internet of Things Grand Challenge for Development Public-Private Partnership (USAID IDIoT GCD PPP) is a groundbreaking hype-based approach to jumpstart tech-materialism for the world’s poorest Africans.


USAID International Drones for Internet of Things Grand Challenge for Development Public-Private Partnership (USAID IDIoT GCD PPP)

Soon, Facebook drones will be flying over Africa, delivering broadband Internet to every citizen of the country. Through the unique IDIoT program, USAID will be installing 3D printers on every drone. USAID is calling on all innovative innovators innovating innovation to propose what should be printed and air-dropped on poor people that will automatically lead to spontaneous food security, rule of law, and greater resilience, making poor people poor no more.

The innovative innovators’ innovating innovation for development (I4D) proposal should be a brand new idea that has never been 3D printed and then airdropped before, yet is proven to be effective in fighting poverty through rigorous and extensive randomized control trials.

The winning proposal will receive 1 MILLION Facebook likes!

Innovators should focus purely in the innovative aspect of their innovation as scale and sustainability is assured through the PPP with Facebook, which like all private enterprises, has never failed at any initiative before. Facebook also has proven social impact and economic value through selling user data without user knowledge, so proposals should be devoid of security plans or privacy measures.


The International Drones for Internet of Things Grand Challenge for Development Public-Private Partnership (IDIoT GCD PPP) is open to all innovative innovators’ innovating innovation for development (I4D), so by definition it excludes anyone currently or previously employed by USAID, the World Bank or any UN agency.

Innovative innovators’ innovating innovation for development (I4D) must follow a 4 stage process to win the grand prize: 1 million Facebook likes.

  • Stage 1: Leveraging Twitter, innovators are required to tweet their entry using the #IDIoTGCD hashtag during April 1, 2015. These tweets will form the foundation of a global pro-poor movement, on par with other Twitter-based revolutions like the Arab Spring and BlackLivesMatter.
  • Stage 2: Tweets from Stage 1 will be reviewed by a panel of experts, and the best 100 tweets will be awarded 100 retweets from a combination of USAID Twitter accounts. This will serve as full financial support to underpin development of a full proposal.
  • Stage 3: Innovators will develop a 60-page proposal (59 pages will consist of Certifications and Representations), while transmitting a Meerkat livestream of their proposal development process. All proposals must have a M&E plan that includes gender component – i.e. written by a woman and reference a gender of the proposers choice. Proposals will be reviewed by a billion-dollar iNGO, which will have the worldwide, royalty-free right to use the proposed ideas in their own proposals.
  • Stage 4: Shortlisted innovators will be required to attend an Innovators Summit of Innovation in Washington, DC, where the winning innovation will receive 1 million likes (or 5,000 Twitter followers for $5). All runners-up will receive a firm handshake from the acting Administrator. Any resulting contract negotiation implies full surrender of intellectual property, personal likeness, and children’s hope for a quality education.

For more information about the USAID IDIoT GGD PPP, please tweet questions to @wayan_vota and @McDapper.

Filed Under: Featured, Funding, Thought Leadership
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Written by
Wayan Vota co-founded ICTworks. He also co-founded Technology Salon, MERL Tech, ICTforAg, ICT4Djobs, ICT4Drinks, JadedAid, Kurante, OLPC News and a few other things. Opinions expressed here are his own and do not reflect the position of his employer, any of its entities, or any ICTWorks sponsor.
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13 Comments to “Breaking News! USAID Grand Challenge for Development with Facebook”

  1. Lfox says:

    genius! (still rocking to Rick Astley)

  2. agblick says:

    Great! wanna share this with all the IT geeks in Uganda.

  3. agblick says:

    Hahahaha this is a scam. it’s fools day today!

    • Mario Marais says:

      A really good 1 April IDIoT scheme…..USAID IDIoT GCD PPP).. 🙂 BUT! It might get funded!!??!!??

  4. paolobrunello says:

    Kudos guys! Best April’s fool so far!

  5. offendeduser says:

    This is obviously an April Fool’s joke. I never comment on stories but I was so incredibly offended by this article I couldn’t let it be. Even though it is very clearly a joke and meant to poke fun at USAID and the absurdity of the scope of some development projects, there are elements to this that were unnecessary. I think that you could have made a great jab without some of the offensive references to poverty and peoples of Africa. A good April Fool’s joke is both funny and tasteful; this is utterly tasteless.

  6. Jake says:

    Pure genius, as always. The sad thing is that I was actually on board for the first few sentences. This is seriously the funniest thing I have read all year.
    I sent it to all our staff & told them we have a long weekend ahead of us to get this proposal done on time.

  7. Thank You! says:

    Thank you. Totally LOVED your blog post this morning. Not much can make me laugh out loud at 6 in the morning but you succeeded.

  8. John says:


    I used to work on GCDs. You absolutely goddamn NAILED IT. Congratulations. This may be the funniest int’l development piece of writing I’ve ever read.

  9. LG says:

    Pure gold!

    Imagine 3D printing 3D printers. The poor people can then print whatever they want! Including wax versions of rich people that they could hang out with. We could have an app on the printer with all different rich people you could print – Barack Obama, Michael Jackson, Messi. That’s the teach a man to fish approach rather than feed him a fish approach we’re all trying hard to do.

    I’d like a license on this idea and reserve the right to $1 for every 3D printed thing the poor people print (per month).

  10. Steven says:

    this is brilliant. i’m still giggling about I4D. has anyone spammed negroponte with this link?

  11. Wayan Vota says:

    An update: of the 1,300 people I can confirm opened this email ( actual # is higher), 46 were Rick Rolled. Were you one of them?