‘Apps for Development' Competition Receives Greatest Response from Africa Region

February 3, 2011

30 Eligible Apps from Several Countries in Africa; Public Voting Now Open

WASHINGTON, February 3, 2011 – The World Bank’s ‘Apps for Development’ competition, a contest that challenged software developers to create apps using World Bank development data, received the greatest response from the Africa Region.  Out of the 107 global submissions, one third of the apps came from Africa (more than North America and Europe). Organizers expect a large voting turn out from the continent as well. Voting ends February 28.
From the region, Uganda submitted the most apps, followed by Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, Niger and Rwanda.  Specifically from Africa, submissions range from Facebook applications to apps on an iPhone, and include open payment platforms as well as utilizing Google Data and geovisualization.

“The fact that African countries submitted the largest number of apps is a testament to the often untapped resource of burgeoning software developers in Africa,” said Emeka Okafor, Maker Faire Africa Curator and the director for TED Global 2007 “The talent is there; such talent must be recognized.”  The applications came in response to the World Bank’s global call for apps to help find solutions to today’s development challenges and to raise awareness of the Millennium Development Goals.
Aside from the Popular Choice Award, an expert judging panel will select winners for the First, Second, and Third prizes, five Honorable Mentions, and a Large Organization Recognition Award.  @KenyanPundit Ory Okolloh, co-founder of @Ushahidi, is part of the judging panel, as well as Craig Newmark of Craiglist and Kannan Pashupathy of Google. The winners will be announced at the joint World Bank/International Monetary Fund Spring Meetings in April 2011.

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