Now Open: ITU-Women Entrepreneurship Accelerator Digital Innovation Challenge for women Entrepreneurs

The 2022 WEA Digital Innovation Challenge, with the theme of “Building enabling ecosystems for women entrepreneurs,” has been established by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the Women Entrepreneurship Accelerator (WEA), and Mary Kay Global. The 2023 Commission on the Status of Women (CSW67) Priority theme of “Innovation and technological change, and education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls” is aligned with this challenge, which supports WEA’s goal of empowering 5 million women entrepreneurs by the year 2030. The six United Nations agencies (ITU) have gathered for WEA, a multi-partnership project on women’s entrepreneurship,  International Trade Centre (ITC)International Labor Organization (ILO), UN Development Program (UNDP) UN Women, UN Global Compact (UNGC) 

The Challenge will aid in the discovery of scalable, cutting-edge digital solutions that allow nations, societies, communities, institutions, and people to create a more gender-inclusive digital entrepreneurship ecosystem, fostering an environment that supports the establishment and expansion of women-owned and women-led businesses. ​

The challenge’s goal is to create vibrant, inclusive digital innovation ecosystems that support and enable women entrepreneurs. To this end, existing digital solutions created by women-owned businesses, startups with at least one female founder, microentrepreneurial women, or creative change agents working to advance the Sustainable Development Goals will be supported (SDGs).


Governments, international organizations, NGOs, start-ups in the corporate sector, research institutes, academic institutions, and civil society organizations (CSOs) are all eligible to participate in the challenge (collectively, “the Participants” and individually, “the Participants”).

The Challenge is only open to legal organizations that are duly registered in an ITU Member State and include at least one female leader on their team (such as the founder, chief executive, or a comparable position).

There can be only one submission per Participant. Multiple entries from the same participant will result in their disqualification.

The project or minimal viable product (MVP) that participants must have already been working on must:

  • a. fosters and supports female entrepreneurship within digital innovation ecosystems and
  • b. has already been applied or tested
  • c. presents a fresh, inventive project or prototype and discusses its prospects for expansion.
    is a digital remedy.

Participants must be available from February 7 through February 10, 2023, for a four-day, two (2)-hour virtual boot camp, and through the end of April 2023, to meet with their mentor and the program team.

The representatives of Participants represent and warrant that they are authorized to participate in the Challenge on behalf of their particular institution/organization and that all information given is true, accurate, and up-to-date. ITU retains the right to examine submitted data to ensure its accuracy and eligibility for the Challenge.

Program benefits include

  • capacity-building training,
  • a mentorship scheme,
  •  access to network of change-makers,
  • a publication of the case
  • and the chance to attend the 67th session of the CSW67), New York, USA.

Deadline: January 20, 2023. For More Information and details Visit the Official Webpage of the ITU WEA Digital Innovation Challenge

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