Computerworld Honors 2013: Tech projects that are changing the world

These organizations are using technology to solve some of society's most pressing and complex issues.

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Economic Development

Organization Project Name Project Achievements
Unique Identification Authority of India Aadhaar

Aadhaar allows residents to prove identity through biometrics; this technology innovation is targeted first at the 400 million people who can't prove their identity, thereby allowing them to participate in transactions and programs that require ID

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21st Century Award winner
Engro Foods Ltd. Engro Milk Automation Network (EMAN) EMAN's use of 1,400-plus point-of-sale machines tied to back-office systems automates dairy farmers' milk sales, creating more transparency into transactions; system is expanding to bring other services, such as banking and automated bill pay, to rural areas throughout Pakistan Finalist
Solar Sister Solar Sister Program Organization's use of mobile phones, Google Docs, Salesforce, cloud computing and other IT infrastructure enables it to manage inventory, direct sales and workers selling its innovative solar-powered devices to Africans with no other access to electricity Finalist
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH African Cashew Initiative (ACi) Smartphones and enterprise resource planning applications allow farmer cooperatives in five African countries to more effectively govern their cooperatives, manage business processes, gain insight into financials, and handle analytics and product certifications Finalist
PlanNet Finance Group -- StarShea Ltd. Empowering Rural Women and Providing Sustainable Access to Market Smartphones, business software and microfinance give rural Ghana women in the shea nut harvesting and shea butter business access to technical and business training, pricing data and production improvements Finalist
City of Boston Boston Public Computing Centers/ Boston Sustainable Broadband Adoption Operation of 53 public computing centers rooted in neighborhoods focuses on delivering targeted training to low-income families with children, unemployed individuals lacking digital skills, and seniors in public housing
Clackamas County CBX: Clackamas Broadband Express -- Information at the Speed of Light Clackamas Broadband Express, a 180-mile countywide fiber ring, is a fiber-optic middle-mile network that links the county's rural areas with non-rural areas, providing improved communications for public agencies, local communities, schools and healthcare facilities
Ekuber Ventures Inc. GSA Office of CIO Salesforce Federal deployment of cloudbased Salesforce platform reduces the time it takes staff to deliver services, cuts capital costs, improves utilization of resources and heightens mission performance; it also enhances communications and collaboration abilities
Genesys Works Workforce Development for Economically Disadvantaged Young People Nonprofit organization prepares disadvantaged high school seniors for college business careers by focusing on the IT training needed to enter and succeed in corporate IT departments
Globant TesteAR IT job placement program focuses on training and preparing youths from vulnerable groups to enter the labor market in the software industry, resulting in expanded professional opportunities for participants
Government of the District of Columbia -- DC-NET Community Access Network (CAN) CAN, a 100 Gbps open-access network, brings fiber-based broadband to community anchors and outdoor access points, providing free public Internet access with a focus on anchors in underserved areas of the city
Horizon Telcom Connecting Appalachia Ohio Middle Mile Consortium This nearly $100 million effort to build a fiber-optic broadband network for 34 Appalachian counties in Ohio includes agreements with last-mile providers to bring broadband into 10,000 unserved square miles, thereby supporting more economic and educational opportunities
Hewlett-Packard Co. HP LIFE e-Learning E-learning curriculum allows entrepreneurs around the globe to take courses in IT and business skills at their own convenience as well as participate in discussion boards, online forums and webinars wherever and whenever they have Internet access
Hewlett-Packard Co. HP Net-Zero Energy Data Center Integration of energy and cooling supply from local renewable sources, combined with a novel demand management approach that schedules workloads based on resource availability and performance requirements, extends to more people the potential to operate data centers while lowering costs and environmental impact
IndiSoft/Hope LoanPort RxOffice Platform Powers Hope LoanPort Platform for Housing Counselors Homeowner Connect provides secure platform for financially struggling homeowners to connect with and submit documentation to housing counselors and mortgage companies to engage in alternatives to home foreclosures
King County Department of Information Technology Thin Client Kiosks Replacing aging PCs with thin-client technology in facilities used by job seekers creates more flexible and reliable IT environment at lower costs and with reduced energy requirements, saving more than $45,000 annually in equipment and support costs
Liebherr Mining Equipment Newport News Co. Liebherr Mining Training System E-learning strategy built on Saba's Learning Management System allows company to effectively train new and existing workers in economically depressed and remote areas around the world, including Chile, Ghana and Indonesia
National Community Stabilization Trust REOMatch Web application connects local housing providers implementing neighborhood stabilization programs to lists of foreclosed properties within specific geographic target areas; providers can also start purchase process and manage entire transaction through the application
NComputing Education Beyond Borders with NComputing Adoption of desktop virtualization is a low-cost, low-maintenance and low-impact solution that allows schools, including those in economically depressed areas, to give all students access to computers and thereby equip the next generation with modern computing skill
Nepal Clearing House Ltd. Electronic Cheque Clearing Implementation Initiative to expand modern banking services in Nepal deploys advanced technologies to create the infrastructure needed to operate a national payment system, which reduces operational costs and risks while expanding services to people and supporting economic growth
Northwest Open Access Network (NoaNet) NoaNet Washington Rural Access Project (WRAP) Nonprofit broadband provider brings broadband access to 170 rural communities and 2,000 schools, hospitals, emergency responders, libraries and universities in Washington, resulting in a hundredfold increase in infrastructure backbone to serve those communities
Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry Pennsylvania JobGateway New portal uses leading technologies to bridge the gap between job seekers and employers by offering simple and improved access to re-employment services and new tools while maintaining seamless integration with existing career services
Savi Technology Economic and Humanitarian Benefits of Cargo Tracking in Ghana Tracking software delivers a sustainable solution that gives realtime visibility for all cargo journeys, which cuts losses from theft and increases customs revenue; public organizations in Kenya and Tanzania are adopting this technology following its success in Ghana
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Labor Market Information System System collects, integrates and analyzes labor market data and patterns to give various stakeholders the crucial timely data needed to formulate and implement labor and employment policies
Verizon Wireless LTE in Rural America Collaboration between Verizon Wireless and rural telecom companies to build and operate 4G LTE networks in low-density markets throughout the U.S. brings high-speed mobile broadband to underserved areas, enabling individual and community economic growth

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