A new track in the SIPA Dean’s Challenge Grant supports Brazil-oriented Challenge Grant teams. The SIPA Dean’s Challenge Grant invites students to put their policy passions into entrepreneurial ventures – whether for profit or not for profit – and to design cutting-edge projects that use ICT and/or data analytics to advance a public policy objective through entrepreneurship. Special new recruitment and support elements have been added to the SIPA Dean’s Public Policy Challenge to cultivate new student-led enterprises to solve pressing contemporary issues that affects Brazil. ​The enterprise is part of the existing SIPA Dean's Public Policy Challenge Grant, which provides funding, mentorship, and guidance to students to develop and establish social ventures that utilize ICTs to address a pressing policy challenge. The selected teams receive an award to help fund the launch or further development of their venture in Brazil.

For more information please contact [email protected].

2022 Startups

Energia+ is an online platform that aims to make use of data related to the volume of water remaining in reservoirs in Brazil and, through the nudge model, encourage the conscious consumption of water and electricity in households, seeking to present customized information in a structured and simple way to citizens regarding their own consumption and on the updated situation of the reservoirs that supply them. The expected result is that there will be a reduction in the consumption of water and electricity in homes that have the nudges model active.

Students: Ester Hee Kim (SIPA MIA ’22), Daniel Rocha Correa (SIPA MIA ’23), Luis Gustavo Perez Fakhouri (SIPA MPA ’22)

2021 Startups

Tech2Protect seeks to address gender-based violence (GBV) in underserved communities in Recife, Brazil, and New York City, USA. Tech2Protect has developed Athena, a learning platform for elementary-level educators to prevent GBV and child abuse by integrating key topics into school curricula. Athena will allow educators to monitor GBV and abuse in real time, providing an unprecedented evidence base for educators and policymakers at the local, state, and federal levels to take action. Team advisors included Sarah Holloway, Ronaldo Lemos, and John C. Liu.

Students: Madeleine Dejean MPA-DP '21, Julia Dias MPA '21, Minji Ko MPA '21, Saiful Salihudin MIA '21, Marjorie Tolsdorf MPA-DP '21, Renata Penalva TC MS '20

2020 Startups

Ciclico aims to serve the ideal of replacing currently vicious city climate cycles (urban heat leading to air-conditioning leading to greater heat), with virtuous cycles of natural cooling and lower energy usage. Central to Cilico’s mission is a technology solution which creates transparency into which urban cooling solutions create the greatest climate impact. Ciclico’s product overlays Satellite Geodata, Hyperlocal weather data, Community Survey data, and data from custom installed IoT sensors. Ciclico will target one specific use-case of urban cooling i.e. ‘Rooftop Urban Farms’ prior to expanding the product for other use-cases.  

Students: Pranav Ramkumar MPA '21, Valeri Ho (GSB MBA '21), Jeremy Seah (GSB MBA '21), Perry Landesberg MIA '20, Yian Ke MIA '20), Wissam Abdel Nour (Engineering MSc in Civil Engineering '20), Eduarda Zoghbi MPA '21


Participa Brasil aims to be the interface for social participation between citizens and congresspersons, as well as the main source of information for a broad overview of social demands priorities. Participa Brasil is an online tool that connects elected legislators to the citizens in an effective way to consult the population and to monitor legislators’ votes vis-a-vis their districts’ preferences. In order to achieve that, we will build a platform in which citizens will be able to vote for specific aspects of proposed bills, as well as propose new issues themselves, and the most representative outcomes will serve as the input for the district legislator’s vote on the matter. This platform will enable social deliberation and social engagement on the Legislative Branch of Brazil, in the Municipal, State and Federal levels.

Students: Bruna Credidio Camara MPA '21, Tiago Amaral Ciarallo MPA '20, Brian Kennedy MPA-DP '21

2019 Startups

CitiZap is an Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based virtual assistant that connects people with public agencies in their place of residence. To citizens, it means a free, fast and reliable single point of contact to request and monitor services from city, state or federal agencies and other public service providers (such as utility companies). To these providers, it represents an automated and streamlined way to receive and manage citizens’ requests, inquiries and complaints optimizing information flow and reducing bureaucracy. At a higher level, CitiZap promotes government accountability and empowers data-driven decisions such as budget planning and resource allocation.

Students: Diego Folly de Andrade MPA '19, Jennifer Jacobowitz Rae MPA '20, Rodrigo Octavio Pereira e Ferreira MPA '19, Felipe Rocha (SEAS Dec 2018)