Technology can solve the most pressing problems of the world, or at least that's what Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt believes. Schmidt will donate a considerable amount to organizations or individuals who can put technology to good use and change the world for the better.
Schmidt said in a latest interview that he donated $1 million to help enable people who can help solve global issues using technology. The plan was revealed during an interview with CBS about his best-selling book, co-authored with ideas director at Google Jared Cohen, titled "The New Digital Age: Transforming Nations, Businesses, and Our Lives" that will be released in paperback on March 4.
"There's lots of people working on the solutions. We identified a whole bunch of companies in different parts of the world (who) try to solve oppressive censorship, empower individuals and make these (things) more useful," Schmidt told CBS.
Details about the grantees of "New Digital Age Grant" will be announced March 10. The grantees are contributing into solving some of the biggest challenges outlined by Schmidt and Cohen in their book.
"In writing the 'New Digital Age' Jared and I developed a strong belief in the power of technology to address some of the thorniest global challenges, a belief which was strengthened with each country we visited. We felt it was important to recognize the work being done by non-profits that show promise in these areas. Receiving a New Digital Age Grant should accelerate their work in a meaningful way," Schmidt said in a press release.
The grantees of the private donation of the Google chairman are groups or individuals come from different sectors. Some are working for academic institutions, others are individuals working on their own projects, some are living in the United States while there are also those based abroad. Each grantee is contributing to the goal of using technology to connect five billion people to the Web in the next few years.
"Google's mission is to connect the world and get that information out. We want a free open internet for every citizen of the world," Cohen said at the CBS interview.
Schmidt describes the donation for the technology grant as "putting my money where my mouth is" and this is consistent with what Google has been doing for technology.
One of the long-term projects of Google, for example, is to come up with affordable robotics that can help explore the moon. Google has picked five finalists for the Milestone Prizes of its Lunar XPrize who has the chance to win a total cash prize of $6 million for their short-term accomplishments. Google also upped the total prizes for the project to $40 million.
The company's Google Map is also a platform that has been used by many organizations for very noble projects such as a Forest Watch map. Then there are other ventures that try to bring the fastest Internet connection to different parts of the U.S. and the rest of the globe. It also invests on people that can make the company's dreams a reality.