New Zealand’s “Global Enterprise Experience” Receives the 2017 Intercultural Innovation Award

01-Dec-2017 8:02 AM

  • The initiative was selected among 1,300 grassroots organizations that applied for the prestigious Intercultural Innovation Award, a partnership between the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and the BMW Group.
  • The Intercultural Innovation Award Ceremony was held in New York at United Nations headquarters, in the presence of ambassadors and high-level UN officials.

NEW YORK--()--The “Global Enterprise Experience” from New Zealand is one of the ten global grassroots initiatives receiving the 2017 Intercultural Innovation Award bestowed by the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the BMW Group.


The Intercultural Innovation Award Ceremony, held this year for the first time at United Nations headquarters in New York, was chaired by Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, and Mr. Bill McAndrews, Vice President BMW Group Communications Strategy, Corporate and Market Communications. See event photo.

“The driver behind the ‘Global Enterprise Experience’ is the idea that we can solve global issues if our emerging leaders learn to work in partnership across cultural divides,” said Deb Gilbertson, Programme Director. “Our worldwide initiative has been run from remote and small New Zealand, and we are grateful to the Intercultural Innovation Award for acknowledging our efforts to develop cross-cultural skills in young people.”

Students enrolled in the “Global Enterprise Experience” are placed in teams with diverse backgrounds. The teams then have three weeks to develop a business concept proposal on a profitable product or service that addresses a social or environmental challenge. Students become skilled in managing across cultures and time zones, leading team members from developed and developing countries with vastly different world views.

The Intercultural Innovation Award supports grassroots initiatives that promote intercultural dialogue and understanding, thereby contributing to peace, cultural diversity and more inclusive societies.

In addition to a financial grant, the “Global Enterprise Experience” will receive support from UNAOC and the BMW Group to help their project expand and replicate in other contexts. This model of collaboration between the United Nations and the private sector creates deeper impact, as both partners provide their respective expertise to ensure the sustainable growth of each project. Assistance is customized based on the specific needs of award recipients.


In case of enquiries, please contact:
BMW Group
Milena Pighi, +49-89-382-66563
Head of Corporate Social Responsibility
Alessandro Girola, +1-929-274-6217
Programming Coordinator


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