The 3rd Annual Innovations Pitch Competition will focus on innovative solutions to improve children’s current and future health and well-being in low-resource settings, for a healthier, more sustainable world. The Annual Innovations Pitch Competition is hosted at the Annual Meeting, which will be held virtually in 2020.
The 3rd Annual Innovations Pitch Competition will highlight tools and methods that will improve vaccine acceptance, accessibility and delivery, and diagnosis and treatment, of high impact diseases in the pediatric population living in low-resource settings.  

The innovations proposed should be marketable, scalable and rooted in scientific rigor. Innovations may be target at, but are not limited to:
  •  COVID-19
  • Climate change and consequences to humans and animals.
  • The mitigation of childhood vaccine-preventable disease risk through social communication, new technology, and improvements in vaccine delivery. 
  • The delivery of better risk assessment decision tools for measuring planetary health risks and predicting global health actions. 
  • Reducing infant and child mortality, especially from high-impact diseases such as malaria.
Innovations Application Eligibility  
  • Individuals or teams may apply. 
  • Applications must be from a person or team currently working and residing in a low/low-to middle income countries (LMIC), and/or have a partner based in an LMIC who is actively involved in the development of the innovation.
Additional Information
  • Five finalists will be selected to advance to the final competition, which will be live-streamed during the 2020 Annual Meeting. 
  • Format: each of the five finalist selected will pitch his/her innovation in a 5-10 minute ‘TED Talk’ style talk. The pitches will be pre-recorded and sent to ASTMH in advance of the Annual Meeting. Finalists may use a single PowerPoint slide that has up to three transitions. Finalists will receive a small stipend to assist with the preparation of the presentation. 
  • A panel of distinguished judges will ask questions of the finalists, and will score each finalist based on innovation, impact, approach and ability to deploy the innovation.  
  • The competition is interactive; the audience will ask questions and will vote through a digital application. 
  • The judges’ score will count for 60% of the final total; the audience vote will count for 40%. 
  • Prizes for the five finalists will be awarded as follows: 
                ♦ $10,000 Grand prize
                ♦ $5,000 Second place
                ♦ $1,000 for each of the Third, Fourth and Fifth places
                ♦ $500 bonus for audience favorite (grand prize winner not eligible for audience favorite award)

For questions, concerns or general inquiries, contact Kyle Harwood, Operations Coordinator. 


Note of Appreciation

Many thanks to the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) for their funding. A special thank you to Past President Peter Hotez, MD, PhD, FASTMH, FAAP, recipient of the 2019 RMHC Awards of Excellence, for sharing his grant award with ASTMH.

Previous Finalists and Former Symposia
2019: Innovations for Response to Outbreak-Prone Diseases: A Challenge to Innovators to Pitch their Ideas for Reducing Risk, Improving Prediction and Delivering Better Healthcare Tools in Resource-Limited Settings. Innovative ideas for mitigating outbreak-prone disease risk through novel uses of social communication, improved predictive capabilities, or development of better tools to detect disease, control disease, and disseminate information on disease spread.

Grand prize winner: Minmin Yen, PhagePro
Innovation: Prophalytic-Vc: A Phage-based Intervention to Disrupt Household Transmission of Cholera
For more information, visit 

2nd Place: Chang Hee Kim, GoDx: Rapid, Low-cost Field Diagnostic for Pathogens that Cause Diarrhea Outbreaks

3rd - 5th Places (listed alphabetically)
  • Laura Braun, Capta Diagnostics: Smart Microscopy for Diagnosing Soil-transmitted Helminths and Schistosomiasis  
  • Holiday Goodreau, TickTracker: TickTracker Mobile Application
  • Chouaibou Mouhamadou, Environment Entomology Textile Associates: A Trapping Bed Net (T-Net) to Overcome Mosquito Insecticide Resistance
‚ÄčAudience Favorite: Laura Braun, Capta Diagnostics

Thank you to the 2019 Innovations Pitch Competition educational supporter, Roche Diagnostics, Inc., and our sponsors ASTMH and Vulcan, Inc.

2018: Innovations for Mitigation Response to Outbreak-Prone Diseases: A Challenge to Innovations for Reducing Risk, Improving Prediction and Delivering Better Healthcare Tools. Topics for innovation include mitigating risk through social communication, improving predictive capabilities, delivering better tools (surveillance, diagnostics, data-sharing, vector control, as examples), and other novel innovations to prevent, detect and respond to outbreaks of international concern.

Grand prize winner: Tristan Ford and Margaret Glancey, VectorWEB
 Innovation: A Novel System for Autonomous Vector Surveillance

2nd Place: Camila De Oliveira, FIOCRUZ: Rapid strip test for ID and surveillance of cutaneous leishmaniasis risk areas

3rd -5th (listed alphabetically)
  • Rinki Deb, Determining Indoor Residual Spraying Qulaity usuing Electromagnetic Wave Sensors
  • David Serre, A Universal and high-throughput vector-borne disease surveillance assay
  • Rhys O'Neill and David Cyprian, Novetta: Assessments, Boots on the Ground, Communications, Data...: An A-Z Solution for Social Mobilization in Developing Regions

(Winners of the 2018 Innovations Pitch Competition, Tristan Ford [left] and Meg Glancey [center] of VectorWEB at the Johns Hopkins Center for Bioengineering Innovation and Design, and their professor Dr. Soumyadipta Acharya [right], the Graduate Program Director of the JHU CBID.)

ASTMH October 2018 Newsletter article: Whatever happened to the 2018 Innovations Pitch Competition Winner, VectorWEB?

Thank you to the 2018 Innovations Pitch Competition sponsors, ASTMH and Vulcan, Inc.