Amidst FinTech’s hype, entrepreneurs around the world have overlooked one of the greatest innovation opportunities – government. The government is one of the most complex and resource-consuming ecosystems and it’s in desperate need for innovation.
In their analysis of conditions for breakthrough innovation in government, Nikhil R. Sahni, Maxwell Wessel and Clayton M. Christensen noted that “Government leaders and employees are quick to point toward systemic problems such as outmoded human resources systems, a budgeting process that rewards extraordinary performance by reducing future resources, and burdensome request for proposal (RFP) systems as explanations for their lack of change.”
Fortunately, the public sector support for the startup community around the world has not gone unnoticed with leading representatives in private sector developing solutions dedicated to enhancing the business of government. Given the scale of the US governmental structure ($4 trillion in yearly expenses, more than 2,300 subsidy programs, and 2.1 million civilian employees), the potential to bring innovation into the public sector is an extraordinary opportunity the global startup ecosystem. Global P2G payments flows only are estimated to be at $7.7 trillion and represent a significant share of the global payments landscape.
Citi with support of its strategic allies – LetsTalkPayments.com (LTP), IBM, Microsoft, Mastercard and PwC – invites entrepreneurs to bring innovation into the public sector
In February, Citi will kick off Citi Tech for Integrity (T4I) Challenge, an open innovation initiative dedicated to bringing innovation to the public sector. With the support of its strategic allies including LTP, Microsoft, Mastercard, IBM and PwC, Citi is seeking to source tech solutions that promote global integrity across eight pillars:
- Government transactions;
- Culture, ethics and engagement;
- Information, security and identity, crisis management and aid;
- Cutting the red tape; analytics, reporting and transparency;
- Financial crimes and illicit activities;
The T4I Challenge – run by Citi and its allies – will connect innovators and the public sector to find solutions for more effective and efficient government. The challenge is a virtual accelerator program that will open its application process in early February.
At the first stage preceding the opening of applications, the T4I Challenge is crowdsourcing descriptive “pain points” that guide tech innovators toward targeted areas where integrity issues are of greatest concern (i.e., cash payments, manual operations, paper processes, AML, identity, cybersecurity, etc.) and represent an area of opportunity to apply technological solutions. Aggregated pain points are then provided to developers in the curriculum that guides their solution development. Citi encourages companies and teams to submit detailed pain points; multiple submissions across multiple categories are welcome.
The T4I Challenge Timeline
Source: Citi T4I Challenge
Starting in early February, the challenge will open applications for submission of a two-page outline of solutions that will be reviewed by Citi allies for the Accelerator class. Selected applicants further will be invited to participate in a world-class virtual accelerator to add value to their proposed solutions. Final submissions include a two-minute video explaining the final solution. In May and June, successful innovators will be invited to showcase their working prototype at live Demo Days hosted by regional governments.
At the final stage, in July 2017, Citi will announce finalists and potential piloting opportunities they are awarded with Citi and its allies.
Enhancing the efficiency of national government is a critical step in building an innovative nation. Federal structures in developing and developed countries are equally interested in supporting the entrepreneurial community. But the results of such support can be fully realized only if entrepreneurs seek a goal wider than a financial performance and bring the results of their work into the public sector. By applying advanced technology in the public sector, startups contribute to building a conducive environment with transparent infrastructures and enhanced opportunities to starts and grow a business.
The LTP Team is proud to be a strategic ally of T4I Challenge and is deeply vested in the success of the T4I innovators. LTP's MEDICI connects the vibrant startup ecosystem, the world’s leading financial institutions and leading FinTech investors to boost the process of open innovation. MEDICI provides unique industry insights, 6,000+ technology startup profiles, deep segment analysis and research, along with on-demand strategic consulting and bespoke research.