Youth Co:Lab India 2021

Youth-led Innovation for Climate Action

Calling Young Climate Champions!

The world is on the threshold of an overwhelming climate crisis. Its calamitous effects have already begun to show. Young innovators have taken up the mantle of driving climate action through disruptive yet scalable solutions. It’s the youth who are the most qualified to take on the challenge as, according to Mr Amit Kumar, Head, Inclusive Growth, UNDP, “they (youth) start with the possibilities and not with the constraints”.

For example Akshyae Singh, an aspiring environmental engineer and scientist, founder of SaafSaans (which means ‘clean breath ‘), a knowledge-sharing platform about pollution. He talks of the need to keep the planet safe, but he immediately zeroes in on the value of keeping the planet safe for the next generation that has not been as much of a priority for decades because “it all comes down to the bigger picture. It is important to recognise the next generation’s right to a cleaner world and can be done by analysing the consequences of ignoring that right.”

Sunita Narain is an Indian environmentalist who uses data for advocating evidence-based interventions as well as a major policy proponent of the Green concept of sustainable development. She shares the conviction that environment and development are two sides of the same coin and that for the millions of poor, who live on the margins of subsistence, it is a matter of survival.

Applications for Youth Co:Lab India 2021 {}

Youth Co:Lab is envisioned as a platform to catalyze youth innovation towards solving the social challenges !!

Youth Co:Lab was jointly created in 2017 by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Citi Foundation. The UNDP works across 170 countries and territories to eradicate poverty while protecting the planet. The New York-based Citi Foundation, which seeks to tackle the world’s greatest social, economic & environmental problems, partners with over 250 community organizations across more than 80 countries and territories. Launched in 2019 in India, by UNDP India and AIM (Niti Aayog), Youth Co:Lab India triggered a youth innovation movement. It is slowly getting established as a channel to express the innovative spirit and drive more youth-led social enterprises in the country.

The 4th edition of Youth Co:Lab India is currently live. This edition, Youth Co:Lab India 2021, is inviting applications from young Indian innovators and entrepreneurs to solve the country’s most pressing challenges, specifically taking advantage of concepts like ‘circular economy’, ‘sustainable transportation’, ‘sustainable tourism’ and ‘sustainable food technology’. The focal area of innovative solutions this year is ‘Climate Action and Accelerating Green Recovery’. The competition is open to those in the age group 18 to 29 years.

Youth Co:Lab India application is LIVE now. Last date to submit application is 30th Sept (Thursday)

Do apply:

From the applications received, the best 40 teams will be shortlisted to participate in the 3-month National Springboard Programme. The criteria for selection will include innovation in ideas, business viability, sustainability and scalability. The National Springboard Programme will be implemented in partnership with Climate Collective Foundation and Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM).

Filtering the Finalists

The shortlisted teams will be provided with mentorship, training and networking support. The initiative will also bring in key stakeholders on climate and youth entrepreneurship to support the young startups in the form of a multi-stakeholder alliance and the National Innovation Challenge & Dialogue. The National Innovation Challenge will select the best two teams to represent India at the Regional Springboard Programme as well as the Youth Co:Lab Regional Summit 2022.

Role of Youth Co:Lab

Youth Co:Lab aims to establish a common agenda for countries in the Asia-Pacific region to empower and invest in the youth, so that they can accelerate the implementation of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through leadership, social innovation and entrepreneurship. It is being implemented in 25 countries and territories across the Asia-Pacific.

Youth Co:Lab in India

In India, Youth Co:Lab was launched by the UNDP, in collaboration with the Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), a flagship initiative of the Government of India’s National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog, in 2019. Since then, three editions of Youth Co:Lab, including youth social innovation challenges, supporting enterprises, and youth-focused dialogues have been jointly implemented.

Check out more about Youth Co:Lab India 2021 here.




Nodal agency under the Government of Kerala for promoting innovation & entrepreneurship

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Kerala Startup Mission

Kerala Startup Mission

Nodal agency under the Government of Kerala for promoting innovation & entrepreneurship

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