“Misk Foundation” Launches “Misk Grand Challenges” Initiative in Partnership with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

  • A joint Initiative between the Prince Mohammed bin Salman “Misk” Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • The initiative focuses on education and global citizenship to enable youth to overcome challenges
  • 100 youth around the world will be awarded 100,000 US Dollars each


In partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Prince Mohammed bin Salman “Misk” Foundation announced the launch of “Misk Grand Challenges” initiative during Misk Global Forum in Riyadh.

The initiative aims to enable youth to devise creative solutions for global challenges in global citizenship and education. Misk Grand Challenges winners will each get $100,000 in seed funding grants. The most influential projects will later be offered a chance to request additional funding.

On this occasion, Mr. Bader Alasaker, the Secretary General of Misk Foundation, commented, “Meeting the challenges and devising creative solutions require global partnerships. Hence, the “Misk Grand Challenges” initiative and our partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation are two models for collaboration to enable youth to create new innovative solutions. We believe that global youth are capable of shaping a positive future for our world.”

Addressing the Misk Global Forum’s second annual gathering here Tuesday, Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said, “Through the work of our foundation, I have seen the incredible power of innovation to transform the lives of the world’s poorest and most marginalized people. The Misk Grand Challenges will incentivize more of the brightest minds around the world to find the best ideas to solve some of the toughest development challenges.”

Coinciding with the announcement of the collaboration, the first two Misk Grand Challenges were launched, one on education and the other on global citizenship. The education challenge will call for proposals that provide for new ideas to transform teaching and school leadership to better prepare children with 21st-century skills, covering problem-solving, leadership, creativity, and adaptability. The global citizenship challenge will call for proposals to engage young people at depth and scale, encouraging them to address one or more of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development. The Global Goals were launched in 2015 by the United Nations (UN) after being agreed on by all 193 UN member states. The first challenge will meet the following six objectives: Poverty alleviation, hunger eradication, health and well-being, good education, gender equality, and hygiene and clean water.

The innovators who receive grants will gain access to three international networks:

  • The Goalkeepers network of advocates on global health and poverty alleviation organized by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Project Everyone;
  • The Misk Global Forum organized by the Misk Foundation;
  • The Grand Challenges’ own global alumni community of creative thinkers who have previously received grants to turn their ideas into real-life concepts.

The Misk Grand Challenges is part of a global family of Grand Challenges initiatives aimed at fostering innovation to solve key global health and development problems.