Global Social Venture Competition – Southeast Asia Round

Monument of Pridi Phanomyong at Thammasat Univ...
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Every year Thammasat University in Bangkok, Thailand hosts the Global Social Venture Competition for the Southeast Asian region (GSVC-SEA).  This business plan competition is focused on promoting new social ventures and social entrepreneurs by providing a forum for these venures to get exposure and funding.

The Global Social Venture Competition (GSVC) was launched in 1999 by the Hass School of Business of the University of California at Berkeley, USA. It was the oldest and largest competition of its kind, to promote entrepreneurial start-up companies which offer measurable social or environmental benefits in addition to profits. These social impacts can be in the areas of health, education, environment, etc. By 2010, GSVC has grown to include over 500 teams worldwide, partnering with many of the world’s top business schools, including the Columbia Business School, the London Business School, and the Indian School of Business.

To enter the GSVC-SEA competition, a team which includes just one graduate business student or a person who graduated from within 2 years from any school submits a five-page executive summary of a proposed venture, which is scalable and offers quantifiable social and/or environmental benefits incorporated into


its mission and practices. Executive summaries must be submitted before 11 pm (Bangkok time), 15 January 2011 to qualify. Please see more detailed rules, regulations and past winners on the website

After the submission process, all entries will undergo the first judging round. Groups of professionals, academics and students gather in Bangkok to review and debate in small groups about the various social ventures submitting. Finally, 12 teams are selected to be the regional finalists who will then come to present their business plans in a two day event in Bangkok, Thailand in March 2011. Each team will be allowed 15 minutes to pitch their plan. Following their presentation, a panel of judges will engage the team in a series of questions regarding the technical, business and social impact aspects of their proposed venture. The top two winners of the business plan competition will be sent to the Global Social Venture Competiton Global Round (GSVC Global) to compete at the University of California, Berkely, USA. In addition, the social venture with the best social impact assessment will be showcased in the Global round.

Here’s a former GSVC-SEA winner who spoke at the 2010 GSVC-SEA Symposium: Lex Reyes talks about RuralLight at GSVC 2010 from Marielle Nadal on Vimeo.

Dengue Fever on the Rise in Thailand

A blood-engorged female Aedes albopictus mosqu...
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Dengue fever is up 94% from last year. Currently, the most affected provinces are Narathiwat, Phayao, Krabi, Chiang Rai, Rayong, Songkhal, Pattani, Petchabun and Trat. Experts think that a longer raining season can be affecting the rise in the disease.

While I was living in Thailand as a teenager, I contracted dengue fever and spent one week in the hospital with an IV drip. Actually, I went to the local clinic and was first diagnosed with the flu. However, within the next two days my condition had worsened to the point that I was admitted to Samitivej Hospital. I was treated for the symptoms of the disease but I want not diagnosed with dengue until my blood tests returned from Australia. This was almost 12 years ago, so I hope that diagnosis for dengue is better now.

I highly recommend using insect repellent, even during the day, to avoid getting bit by the mosquitoes carrying this disease. Also, try to get rid of any pools or puddles of stagnant water where mosquitoes can breed. If you suspect you have dengue fever – get to the doctor quickly.

Basic Information on Dengue

Dengue (pronounced DENG-gay) fever is short for dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) and is common in the tropics including South American and Southeast Asian countries. Dengue can be life-threatening, especially for very young children or elderly. Dengue differs from malaria in that it is equally common in urban areas as in rural areas, although they are both spread via mosquito vectors. Dengue is transmitted to humans by the striped Aedes (Stegomyia) aegypti or Aedes albopictus mosquito, which are daytime feeding mosquito.

Symptoms of Dengue Fever

  • Fever, headaches, eye pain, severe dizziness and loss of appetite
  • hemorrhagic tendency (bruising, bleeding, vomiting blood or bloody diarrhea)
  • Thrombocytopenia – Low blood platelets

Dengue commonly strikes people with low levels of immunity. It is possible to get dengue fever multiple times even though an attack of dengue produces immunity for a lifetime to a particular serotype of the virus (there are 4 serotypes). Dengue goes by other names like “breakbone fever” from the intense joint and muscle pain often associated with the disease.