2021 IEEE CTU Challenge Award Winners

Download the 2021 CTU Challenge Executive Summary

Best Overall

Best Overall Proof of Concept

The Nimble

An Open Source, Portable, and Offline-first Wireless Mesh Network for and by Underserved Communities

Eric Nitschke (USA)

Award: USD 10,000
Sponsored by: Facebook Connectivity

Best Overall Concept


Crowdsource a11y reporting platform
Rahma Utami and Muhammad Noor (Indonesia)
Award: USD 8,000
Sponsored by: Microsoft


Technical Proof of Concept 1st Place


Advanced Digital Development Centers for Delivering Essential Community Services over High-speed Broadband in Rural India

Sarat Pradhan, Niladri Pradhan, and Soumyaprakash Das (India)

Award: USD 7,000
Sponsored by: Intelsat

Business Model
Proof of Concept 1st Place

Platforms to Increase Sustainability and Impact of Communications Services

Ignacio Prieto-Egido, Cesar Cordova Bernuy, Leopoldo Liñan Benitez and Juan Antonio Paco Fernandez (Spain)

Award: USD 7,000

Community Enablement
Proof of Concept 1st Place

Empowering Digital Participation and Affordable Access Through the iNethi Platform

David Johnson and Melissa Densmore (South Africa)

Award: USD 7,000

Technical Concept 1st Place

Bamboo Towers for Low Cost,
Affordable Internet Connectivity to Remote Rural Areas

Sarbani Banerjee Belur, Siddhartha Ghosh and Subhrajit Dutta (India)

Award: USD 5,000

Community Enablement Concept 1st Place

Internet Access in Ecuador’s Amazon

Joel Pliskin, Bruno Taborga, Soledad Mills, and Robert Marsh (USA and Ecuador)

Award: USD 5,000

Second Place and Honorable Mention

Technical Proof of Concept 2nd Place


BRS Deployment in the Fruit Belt Neighborhood in Buffalo, NY

Filippo Malandra, Nicholas Mastronarde, Sunha Kim, Zhangyu Guan, and Houman Saberi (USA)

Award: USD 3,000

Business Model
Proof of Concept 2nd Place

Aggregating Energy & Connectivity in Rural Africa – ICT Hub Model – Case Study Nakivale, Uganda

Conrad Ekisa, Patricia Oviedo, Joaquin Aviles Lopez and Benson Olobo (USA and Uganda)

Award: USD 3,000

Community Enablement
Proof of Concept 2nd Place

TV White Space & Community Networks Cooperative Societies

Feasible Alternatives to Connect the Unconnected Rural Population

Jabhera Matogoro, Nerey Mvungi, Anatory Justinian, and Luzango Mfupe (Tanzania)

Award: USD 3,000

Technical Concept 2nd Place

Intelligent and Cost-effective Multipath TCP (MPTCP)-based Framework for the Satellite Internet

Shiva Raj Pokhrel and Anwar Walid (Australia)

Award: USD 2,000

Business Model Concept,
Honorable Mention


Portable Sonography for Pregnancy and Childbirth in Remote Areas

Joann Canning and Roxanne Giannikos (USA)