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Creative Challenge to tell Story of Overseas Aid Yields "Overwhelming" Quality of Entries

Selection process for top ten ideas in final stages; follow-up challenge round just launched with 7 November deadline

(lifePR) (London, ) Organisers of a global communications challenge to find innovative new ways to tell the story of overseas aid said today they had been overwhelmed by the quality of creative ideas submitted.

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, who together launched the Aid is Working. Tell the World challenge in February 2012, received over 900 applications from 85 countries. The highest number of entries came from the USA, China, UK, India, Canada, South Africa, Romania, Australia, Brazil, Kenya and Nigeria. The creative communications community contributed more than 30% of the entries; other participants included leading international development organisations and academic institutions.

"The response to this first communications challenge has been overwhelming in terms of the creativity and the vision of the entries it's prompted," said Philip Thomas, Cannes Lions CEO. "The participation from the creative communications industry has exceeded our expectations, testament to the spirit of our community to put to good use the power of creativity to solve a global problem."

The selection process to identify the ten finalists has now reached its final stages. The selection committee is made up of the Cannes Chimera – winners of the 2011 Cannes Lions Grand Prix - as well as members of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's review board and a small group of experts. The ten finalists, due to be announced in November, will each receive $100,000 to develop their idea. They will also be invited to join the Cannes Chimera members at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation campus in Seattle, USA, where they will be mentored to hone their ideas, with a chance of winning up to $1,000,000 to put them into practice.

In order to build on the success of this first round of the challenge, the organisers today announced they would launch a follow-up call for submissions. Now live and running until 7 November, this call for ideas will present four specific submission categories for grant seekers. These are:

- Ideas that can be implemented via mobile telecommunications
- Ideas involving new ways to communicate data on aid
- Ideas that engage young audiences
- Ideas that demonstrate the progress of aid

"We had such a rich variety of entrants to our first communications challenge; we now want to go deeper into areas that have the potential to bring some exciting new approaches," said Tom Scott, Director, Global Brand and Innovation at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

"We hope this new challenge will ignite new ideas and unique responses from the global community and value the creativity people will bring to this topic. It's imperative that we communicate these life-changing stories to the world so we can help build greater international support for on-going investment that will continue to improve the lives of poor people."

The communications challenge - Aid is Working. Tell the World (Part 2) - is open to everyone. The idea has to be submitted on two sides of A4 paper between now and 7 November. All ideas will be judged anonymously, solely on their merit. As with the first round, applicants will be eligible for $100,000 seed funding, and the chance to win $1,000,000 to bring ideas to fruition.

The finalists of the newly launched communications challenge will be invited back to the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity in 2013 to present their idea to the rest of the global advertising and communications community and the difference it has made.

The new Cannes Chimera members, who will advise on the programme, review submissions, and mentor the winners as they develop their projects are:

Alexander Schill, Worldwide Chief Creative Officer and Partner, Serviceplan Group, Munich
Winner of the Design Grand Prix: 'The Solar Annual Report 2011', Austria Solar

Carlo Cavallone, Creative Director, Fabrica, Amsterdam
Winner of the Press Grand Prix: 'Unhate' Campaign, United Colors of Benetton

Drew Ungvarsky, Owner and Creative Director, Grow Interactive, Norfolk USA
Winner of the Mobile Grand Prix: 'Hilltop Reimagined for Coca-Cola', Google

Graham Fink, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy, Shanghai
Winner of an Outdoor Grand Prix: '#Cokehands', The Coca Cola Company

Jaime Rosado, Vice President and Regional Creative Director, JWT San Juan, Puerto Rico
Winner of the PR Grand Prix: 'The Most Popular Song', Banco Popular de Puerto Rico

Jonathan Bottomley, Head of Strategy, BBH London
Winner of the Creative Effectiveness Grand Prix: 'Axe Excite - Returning to Universal Truths to Create Global Hits', Unilever

Jesse Coulter, Co-Chief Creative Officer, CAA Marketing, Los Angeles and
Todd Hunter, Creative Executive, CAA Marketing, Los Angeles
Winners of both the Film and Branded Content Grands Prix: 'Back to the Start / Cultivate Campaign', Chipotle

Joao Livi, Executive Creative Director, Talent, São Paulo
Winner of the Radio Grand Prix: 'Repellent Radio', Go Outside Magazine

Jonathan Fowles, Executive Director and Head of Strategy, Manning Gottlieb OMD, London
Winner of the Media Grand Prix: 'Google Voice Search', Google

Nick Law, Executive Vice President and Chief Creative Officer, R/GA New York
Winner of both a Cyber Grand Prix and the Titanium and Integrated Grand Prix: 'Nike+ Fuelband', Nike+

Patrick Kampmann, Creative Director, Volontaire, Stockholm
Winner of a Cyber Grand Prix: 'Curators of Sweden', Swedish Institute/Visit Sweden

Rob Reilly, Worldwide Chief Creative Officer, Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Boulder and
Angel Anderson, Experience Director, Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Boulder, USA
Winners of both the Direct and Promo & Activation Grands Prix: 'Small Business Gets an Official Day', American Express

Stephane Xiberras, Chief Creative Officer, BETC Paris
Winner of the Film Craft Grand Prix: 'Bear', Canal+

Ted Royer, Executive Creative Director, Droga5, New York
Winner of the Grand Prix for Good: 'Help I Want to Save a Life', Help Remedies

Thimoteus Wagner, Chief Creative Officer, Jung von Matt, Hamburg
Winner of an Outdoor Grand Prix: 'The Invisible Drive', Daimler

Members of the first Cannes Chimera will remain part of the Cannes Chimera consultancy board, which will grow year on year.

How to enter
Proposals are being accepted at through November 7, 2012. To learn more about the Cannes Chimera, please visit

About the new categories for the next round of the Aid is Working. Tell the World (Part 2) challenge

Mobile: We seek proposals for projects that will activate emerging mobile networks and engage users, through basic and smart phone technologies, in ways that build support in wealthy economies for aid efforts in places they are needed most.

Data: The emergence of Big Data and web services provide new opportunities to understand and talk about aid. We seek proposals for projects that produce new analysis of and insights to existing data about the impact of aid, and that use it to tell compelling, new stories about how those investments enable progress in the developing world.

Young audiences: It is critical to engage the next generation of global citizens in strategies to address development challenges. We seek proposals for projects that will increase youth awareness of global development challenges and that can prepare young people to be informed advocates and leaders in creating solutions for these problems.

The Progress of Aid: When spent wisely, aid has helped countries lift themselves out of poverty and end their reliance on assistance from donor nations. We seek proposals for projects that show the virtuous cycle of development aid, at both micro and macro levels: how the beneficiaries of aid are using it to become self-sufficient and how countries that were previously supported through aid investments, are now providers of aid for other nations.

About 60th Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, 16-22 June 2013, Cannes, France

The International Festival of Creativity, also known as Cannes Lions, is the world's leading celebration of creativity in communications. Founded in 1954, the Festival takes place every June in Cannes, France. As the most prestigious international annual advertising and communications awards, over 34,000 entries from all over the world are showcased and judged at the Festival. Winning companies receive the highly coveted Lion trophy honouring the most creative film, print, outdoor, interactive, radio, design, sales promotion & activation, film craft and integrated, branded content & entertainment advertising, as well as the best media, direct marketing, PR, titanium and creative effectiveness ideas. The Festival is also the only truly global meeting place for advertisers, advertising and communication professionals. Close to 11,00 delegates from 95 countries attend seven days of exhibitions, screenings, as well as high-profile seminars, workshops, forums and master classes presented by renowned worldwide industry leaders. As the networking and learning opportunity of the year, Cannes Lions is the must-attend event for anyone involved in brand communication.

About Grand Challenges Explorations

Grand Challenges Explorations fosters innovation in global health and development research. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $100 million to encourage individuals worldwide to expand the pipeline of ideas to fight our greatest health and development challenges. The grant program is open to anyone from any discipline, from student to tenured professor, and from any organization – colleges and universities, government laboratories, research institutions, non-profit organizations and for-profit companies. The initiative uses an agile, accelerated grant-making process with short two-page applications and no preliminary data required. Applications are submitted online, and winning grants are chosen approximately five months from the submission deadline. Initial grants of $100,000 are awarded two times a year. Successful projects have the opportunity to receive a follow-on grant of up to $1 million. For more information about Grand Challenges Explorations, visit:
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