Judges Announced for Stage 1 of AI4Resilience Challenge in Bangladesh

The Global Knowledge Initiative (GKI) would like to thank everyone who has applied to the AI4Resilience Challenge in Bangladesh! GKI is implementing AI4Resilience in partnership with Spring Activator and with support from the USAID Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance (BHA). We received several applications as well as dozens of new responses to the social network (ecosystem) survey. We are excited to dive in, and about the next steps in the initiative – follow this space for more on our upcoming Open Learning events and for results of the social network analysis! 

GKI, with our panel of judges who are announced below, will review applications over the next few weeks. Selected applicants will be invited to join as  Challenge Participants, who will take part in targeted learning and collaboration activities and further develop their solutions. You can find a summary of the Challenge process on our program website

If you are interested in contributing to the Challenge and the solutions as a judge, mentor, partner, or co-sponsor, please reach out to

Finally, a warm thank you to our panel of judges for the first stage of the AI4Resilience Challenge.

Announcing Stage 1 Judges


Saida Benhayoune, B.Eng, MBA
Inclusive Business Strategist

Saida Benhayoune is an established expert in business strategy for social impact. After a decade in corporate sustainability, she joined MIT’s D-Lab where she contributed to advancing the field of inclusive business and hybrid partnerships for development. She established and led the MIT Practical Impact Alliance – a global community of learning and practice for business and development practitioners-, organized multiple international co-design summits, developed and taught professional education courses on participatory design and inclusive business, and authored numerous practitioner-friendly publications including the Partnership Co-design Toolkit (P.ACT).

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Saif Kamal 
Founder, Toru Institute of Inclusive Innovation

Saif is the founder of Toru Institute. He founded Toru to nurture youth’s skills to build and scale innovations and enterprises. Toru has trained 10,000 youth across the nation and has incubated leading startups of Bangladesh. Graduates from Toru Institute include, 10 Minute School, Shopup, iFarmer, Solshare, Sheba xyz, Supplyline. Saif brings in 16 years of experience across leading industries and countries.

Lillie Rosen

Lillie Rosen
Innovation Advisor at USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance

Lillie is currently an innovation advisor for USAID’s humanitarian innovation portfolio, and she has worked on humanitarian innovation for the past five years. She co-led a community innovation lab in Jordan with the International Rescue Committee, and supported the learning and research for local innovation labs in Bangladesh, Kenya, and the Philippines with the Start Network. She is passionate about resourcing local solutions to humanitarian problems and has worked in the humanitarian sector for over 12 years.

Rajesh Varghese
Chief Transformation Officer, South Central FSC, Singapore

Rajesh Varghese is currently the Chief Transformation Officer at South Central Community FSC running an innovation program to enable social mobility for low-income families in Singapore. He spent the last 10 years working with children in shelter homes, young people, corporate foundations, and social entrepreneurs in South Asia and Southeast Asia. Rajesh worked with Ashoka in several roles including a stint as Ashoka Singapore Country Director, has elected Ashoka Fellows, and has directly worked with 100+ social entrepreneurs delivering capacity-building modules on system change, impact measurement, and fundraising with partners such as Google, S&P and SAGE foundation.

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