In Partnership with
Bill & Melinda Gates foundation

2013 Challenge: Brief

Lead the Fight Against Extreme Poverty

Please note that entries for this challenge are now closed. The brief for the 2014 challenge will be announced during Cannes Lions 2014 in June.

Entries for the third Cannes Chimera challenge are now closed and the judging process has begun. We would like to thank you for responding with such enthusiasm to this brief, for which we have received in excess of 900 entries.

What happens now?

• In the initial stage of processing, entries will be reviewed by both Cannes Lions and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for their eligibility 
• Entries which answer the brief, meet the criteria of submission documentation and do not conflict with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s goals or funding sanctions will then be viewed by the Chimera's first round jury, which is made up of Grand Prix-winning creatives from Cannes Lions 2013, and previous years
• Entries which receive the highest average marks across a nine-point judging scale will go on to a second round of voting. They will be viewed by the third Chimera
• Up to ten winners will be selected to attend the Chimera Workshop in Seattle in March 2014. They will receive funding of up to $100,000
• We will inform the winners of their success by 31 January 2014

For any questions, please contact



The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Tom Scott introduced the brief in June 2013:

The world is making incredible progress against extreme poverty. Over the last two decades, the number of people living on less than $1.25 per day has been cut in half to 1.1 billion. Now the world is coming together to get this number down to as close to zero as possible, by 2030. It’s a huge goal. All of us can play a role.

The Cannes Chimera is looking for perception-changing communication strategies which will help towards this goal. This is an opportunity to do the most important work of your life: 


The problem: In 2000, international leaders committed to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a set of targets to improve the lives of the world’s poorest by alleviating extreme poverty, hunger, gender inequality, illiteracy and disease by 2015. The MDGs recognised $1.25 a day as the global poverty line – a threshold for supporting basic human needs. The world has made incredible progress at reducing the number of people who live below this line. In fact, the goal to cut extreme poverty in half was achieved five years early. But there’s more work to do. That’s why the world is coming together around a new, ambitious agenda to help ensure that by 2030, extreme poverty is virtually eliminated from the planet.

The challenge: We need the best and most innovative communications ideas in the world to help bring this long-term goal to the forefront and build public awareness and support for the policies and investments that will be required to make progress against it. We need your help. Competition winners will be eligible to apply for a grant to implement their concept in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and its global partners.

Our audience: People who believe that global development problems are important but aren’t acting on that interest, as well as people who may not know enough about development to understand what it is and what it has achieved. We are interested in reaching people who already participate in some kind of social action, such as: consuming media content on development issues and sharing it with their social networks, donating money or volunteering their time for causes. These are people who can catalyse the perceptions and behaviours of others and help create change.


This recent Economist article provides useful context on the nature of extreme poverty and how the world can end it.

This World Bank video shares a good collection of statistics on extreme poverty and progress against it.

These two reports, by Save the Children, and the One Campaign, offer detailed perspective on how the international community can dramatically reduce poverty by 2030.

The Guardian runs two powerful blogs on poverty and development goals, which deliver daily news and commentary on those topics.

Here is the new global agenda to eliminate poverty and advance global development by 2030.

The United Nations, the United Nations Foundation, and the World Bank provide good overviews of the Millennium Development Goals, which set the course for poverty reduction and global development goals since 2000.


There are just a few things we can’t consider…

How The Chimera Works

Entries for this challenge are now closed. entries will open again in 2014, when a new brief will be announced.