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    Gioiosa Ionica, in the Calabria region, is one of the poorest provinces in Italy and Calabria is one of the poorest regions in Europe. The economy is largely run by ‘Ndrangheta, the local branch of mafia. Since 1996, Vincenzo has been determined to change the inevitability of a mafia presence in his land by creating a parallel positive economy that offers the local population a third alternative between unemployment and collaborating with organized crime.

    As scientist from the isolated coastal rainforest region of Colombia, Mabel stimulates sustainable economic development in biodiverse areas by connecting ancestral knowledge, science, and entrepreneurship to create a “bioeconomy.”

    Gangadhar is triggering the network effect in media, by building a technology platform that connects rural reporters to national and international news publishers.

    Evariste has pioneered a holistic approach to efficiently address the issue of e-waste in West Africa by creating public awareness and engaging the informal sector as environmental agents. He is also enabling the development of a green economy through the valorization and commercialization of products formally considered waste.