“Visit www.googlesciencefair.com to get started now—your idea might not only change Africa, it might just change the world,” Google Africa said.
As the annual competition opens its online gates for entries until April 30, 2013 (11:59 PM Pacific Daylight Time (PDT)), the opportunity offers extra prizes and weekly Google+ Hangout sessions for maximised engagement with participants and the public.
“This year we hope to once again inspire scientific exploration among young people,” the blog post continued.
Sakhiwe Shongwe and Bonkhe Mahlalela, two students from Swaziland, made it to the top 15 finalists last year, HumanIPO reported.
The Swazi team entered the competition with the idea of a Unique Simplified Hydroponics Method (USHM), an organic waste-based agricultural growth initiative with the aim to solve food shortage problems in their home country.
The experience will be lengthened by various rounds of selection with 90 worldwide regional finalists (30 from each continent group as divided into Americas, Asia Pacific Europe/Middle East/Africa) identified in the first, followed by a Google+ Hangout on Air series where the 15 finalists will announce themselves to the public to gain votes for the Inspired Idea Award, up for grabs to the greatest world changing potential project.
The final event will take place in California on the September 23, 2013, where prizes for each age category from 13 to 18 will be given.
Throughout, Google+ Hangout sessions on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays will offer support and enrichment to participants by connecting with inventor Dean Kamen, oceanographic explorer Fabien Cousteau and Google Science Fair judges online.
“We hope these Google+ Hangouts will help inspire, mentor and support students throughout the competition and beyond,” Google Africa explained.
Winners of the 2013 Science Fair will receive a US$50,000 scholarship from Google, access to Scientific American archives for the selected participant’s school and also benefit from a trip to the Galapagos, courtesy of National Geographic Expeditions and European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) experiences.
Apart from the Google Science Fair prizes, Scientific American will award US$50,000 to the most impactful project on the grounds of making “practical difference by addressing a social, environmental or health issue”.
Schools are encouraged to enter their innovative, aspiring engineers and scientists as the institution will also benefit with the new US$10,000 cash prize from Google and an exclusive Google+ Hangout with CERN –a new addition to the list of giveaways.
The last two years recorded the participation of 90 counties in 13 languages.