Friday, January 18, 2008

Google's NGO

News reports about a Google foundation headed by University of Michigan smallpox expert Dr. Lawrence (Larry) Brilliant, led us to this website link. Here's where Google's foundation says it is putting Google's money: aspires to use the power of information and technology to address the global challenges of our age: climate change, poverty and emerging disease. In collaboration with experienced partners working in each of these fields, we will invest our resources and tap the strengths of Google’s employees and global operations to advance five major initiatives.

Develop Renewable Energy Cheaper Than Coal (REcC)
Create utility-scale electricity from clean renewable energy sources that is cheaper than electricity produced from coal.

Accelerate the Commercialization of Plug-In Vehicles (RechargeIT)
Seed innovation, demonstrate technology, inform the debate, and stimulate market demand to foster mass commercialization of plug-in vehicles.

Predict and Prevent
Identify "hot spots" and enable rapid response to emerging threats, such as infectious disease and climate risk.

Inform and Empower to Improve Public Services
Use information to empower citizens and communities, providers, and policymakers to improve the delivery of essential public services such as education, health, water and sanitation.

Fuel the Growth of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises
Increase the flow of risk capital to small and medium-sized businesses in the developing world.
It should be interesting to look at the 2009 Annual Report, to see if Google's charitable promises have been fulfilled...

More on the life and career of Dr. Brilliant, in this San Francisco Chronicle profile.