SOURCE: Kauffman Foundation

November 13, 2008 08:30 ET

Global Student Competition Initiates Outpouring of Entrepreneurial Ideas

Students Have Four Days to Create Maximum Value From Water Bottles

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - November 13, 2008) - The organizers of the first-ever Global Entrepreneurship Week today announced the launch of the Global Innovation Tournament. The competition invites student teams around the world to create as much value as possible from a common, everyday object in only four days and present their results in videos posted to YouTube. The mystery object, Water Bottles, was unveiled tonight at 9 p.m. EST. Students have gone to work and will submit their videos on Nov. 17, the first day of Global Entrepreneurship Week.

The Global Innovation Tournament is a fast and furious "Apprentice-style" competition that encourages students to work in teams, challenge assumptions, seize opportunities and be creative. Most of all, it gives them a taste of what it's like to be entrepreneurial by creating value while working with constraints, such as limited time and resources.

Past versions of this competition involved Post-It Notes® and rubber bands, with which teams raised and donated money, composed music, helped the disabled, made political statements and educated children. Results from the first Global Innovation Tournament were so inspirational that a documentary film crew from Infinite Loop Media captured them in a documentary film released earlier this year, "Imagine It!" It is available for free, online viewing or can be downloaded at www.imagineitproject.com.

The competition is being conducted by the Stanford Entrepreneurship Network (SEN), which is a federation of more than 18 organizations across Stanford University that are related to entrepreneurship. SEN programs, including the competition, are sponsored by Deloitte. (http://sen.stanford.edu)

More than 61 institutions in more than 14 countries are participating in the Global Innovation Tournament. Local hosts are conducting the competition in their respective areas and will submit local winners to Stanford University, who will then coordinate global judging. The local winners in most locations will be announced on Wednesday, Nov. 19, and global winners will be announced online on Friday, Dec. 5, on www.unleashingideas.org and http://eweek.stanford.edu.

This competition is only the beginning of thousands of celebrations that will mark Global Entrepreneurship Week, Nov. 17-23, which is co-founded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in the United States and Make Your Mark in the United Kingdom. More than 75 countries are preparing a variety of innovative activities and challenges.

"The enthusiasm for this creativity is contagious. It is exciting to see the buzz that is being generated around this first-ever global celebration," said Jonathan Ortmans, president of Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Student and potential host organizations interested in participating in the Global Innovation Tournament can learn more at http://www.unleashingideas.org/globalinnovation.

To learn more about Global Entrepreneurship Week, visit www.unleashingideas.org.

About Global Entrepreneurship Week

With the goal to inspire young people to embrace innovation, imagination and creativity, Global Entrepreneurship Week will encourage youth to think big, turn their ideas into reality, and make their mark. From Nov. 17-23, 2008, millions of young people around the world will join a growing movement to generate new ideas and seek better ways of doing things. Thousands of activities are being planned in more than 75 countries around the world. Global Entrepreneurship Week is: founded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Make Your Mark campaign; sponsored by NYSE Euronext, IBM and Ernst & Young; and, supported by JA Worldwide, Endeavor, Entrepreneurs' Organization, DECA, YPO-WPO, National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship, Young Americas Business Trust, YES - European Confederation of Young Entrepreneurs, Department for Business Enterprise & Regulatory Reform, AIESEC, Youth Employment Services, The Prince's Youth Business International. To view a complete list of participating countries and organizations or to learn more, visit www.unleashingideas.org.

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