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Membership

2024 Internet for All banner

Hosted by IEEE Communications Society and IEEE Tech4Good

The Digital Divide persists as one of the main challenges of our digital era with more than 33% of the world’s population still unconnected. Moreover, the usage gap remains almost eight times the size of the coverage including gender disparities. This translates into reduced socio-economic opportunities and sustainable development including access to basic services such as healthcare, education, job opportunities, and active participation in both local and global economies.

Although the quality of connectivity has seen improvements in some regions due to the rising demands of emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, areas with either no connectivity or low-quality connectivity persist, particularly in rural regions of the global south. Consequently, the digital divide appears to be widening between those who can harness the benefits of the digital age and those who cannot.

As communication engineers, we recognize our capacity to address this challenge. To tackle these critical issues and realize the potential of connectivity, the expertise of our membership is indispensable. By prioritizing the expansion of connectivity and the enhancement of infrastructure, we can play a pivotal role in bridging this gap and fostering socio-economic development in underserved communities.

Competition Overview

Technology Impact Categories

The IEEE Tech4Good program offers funding opportunities to support grassroots technological projects, led by IEEE members, that address local connectivity gaps to solve pressing social and environmental challenges. The Internet for All Call for Proposals presents a unique opportunity for ComSoc members to bring together their unique skills to bring the Internet to those who need it most.

The local connectivity projects should include specific social impact goals to enhance and improve gender inequalities, education, climate action, and food systems. Applicants must select a focus area for their connectivity project to be considered:

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Projects must have a connection to the local ComSoc chapter and engage a significant number of IEEE ComSoc members. Teams must have the relevant technical and other expertise to credibly execute the project.

Submission Timeline

First round submissions to share the basic proposed plan and budget will be accepted from 27 May - 30 June 2024. Applicants with the strongest initial submissions will then be invited to submit a full proposal within two weeks of the first round of review for the further evaluation of their proposed solution.

Term of funding: Up to 6 months

 

How It Works:

  1. Teams from around the world will submit project proposals identifying a locality where internet connectivity is needed, and how local ComSoc members and peers will create, plan, and implement the connectivity.
  2. The Internet for All reviewers will select 2 projects from each Region to be implemented. Regions are defined as:
    1. North America
    2. Europe, Middle East, Africa
    3. Latin America
    4. Asia Pacific
  3. Each winning project will receive up to US$12,000 to implement and sustain the project.
  4. Teams will train local partners to maintain and sustain the project.

 

Who Can Submit a Project?

Our global ComSoc community is welcome to submit proposals, but please note:

  • The primary applicant must be an IEEE ComSoc professional member grade or higher in good standing. Student members may be secondary applicants. All member numbers are checked during the intake process. If membership status of the primary applicant is in arrears, the submission cannot move forward.
  • In addition, the project lead who is a ComSoc member must be a member of the chapter in the local community where the project is to be implemented.
  • Each team may submit only one proposal.
  • An IEEE OU - preferably the local Section - must act as the fiscal agent. Applicants must discuss this with the OU Treasurer prior to proposal submission. Funds generally cannot be transferred to a Society Chapter or Student Branch. IEEE financial requirements for funding disbursements will apply. Please see IEEE FOM 2.E - IEEE Unit Reporting (Including, but not limited to, Societies, Technical Councils, Geographic Units, and Conferences).
  • Because U.S. economic sanctions and export controls are subject to frequent change, please review the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control’s Sanctions list to determine if your country can receive funding or contact internetforall@comsoc.org with any questions before applying.

 

How Do I Submit a Proposal?

 

Questions?

The team is happy to address any questions you may have about the application, the project, and criteria. Please email your questions to internetforall@comsoc.org and we will have a team member get back to you.