Rappler is also the only Asian media organization among the 5 winners for 2015 under Media and News category.
The 40 winners, which represent innovations from 24 countries, were selected from a pool of 386 innovations which were nominated by 86 United Nations member states.
Described in a press release as a “highly competitive and democratic process,” the WSA selection highlighted the “uniqueness of digital innovation with social impact” of the nominees. They represent "the best and most innovative solutions to the world’s problems."
WSA winners were selected by a jury of international information and communication technology (ICT) experts in two democratic rounds.
Each United Nations Member State is eligible to nominate one product per category for the World Summit Award. The categories are: e-Business and Commerce, e-Media and Journalism, e-Learning and Science, e-Culture and Tourism, e-Health and Environment, e-Entertainment and Games, and e-Inclusion and Empowerment.
Any nomination results from a national pre-selection prior to review by the international WSA Grand Jury.
Philippine-based Rappler connects communities and develops tools that tap into “the wisdom of crowds” or crowdsourcing, the process of harnessing a group's collective answer which, under the right conditions, has proven to be better than any single expert opinion.
Every story on Rappler has a Mood Meter, a patented user engagement system that crowdsources how people feel about Rappler stories. Votes on all the stories are summarized real time and visualized on the Mood Navigator, which aggregates the mood of the day.
Through the Mood Meter, Rappler hopes to help encourage greater self-awareness, transparency and responsibility.
Aside from Rappler, other 2015 WSA winners in the News and Media category are:
Center for Investigative Reporting (Bosnia and Herzegovina), a not-for-profit media organization which reports on corruption, organized crime and other misconduct by means of stories, video documentaries and digital interactive content
Your Story, BBC's (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) online storytelling tool that creates a personalised experience for each user, mixing life events with BBC archive content and visualised data;
Social Net Link (Senegal), the first web platform focusing on tech news and new media in Senegal; and
Imagga (Bulgaria), which develops proprietary image recognition technology, deeply rooted in computer vision, machine/deep learning and convolutional network algorithms.
Winning innovations in other categories include:
MIROCULUS, an easy to use, non-invasive and affordable microRNA detection application from Mexico that can accurately diagnose and monitor diseases at a molecular level through the examination of microRNAs, making it possible to detect cancer in a non-invasive and affordable process.
WSA Chairman Peter Bruck said that the awards are meant to emphasize the importance of connecting people to spark change and deliver solutions.
“To drive meaningful and relevant digital innovation, you have to connect people,” he said. “With the WSA we recognize innovation of tomorrow already today.”
He added that the 2015 WSA winners suit the momentum of digital innovation by “matching local solutions to local needs.”
Rappler, along with 39 projects from 24 countries will be honored with the World Summit Award at the at the World Summit Global Congress in Shenzhen, China, in February 2016. The Congress will be attended by UN representatives, ICT ministries and the private sector.
The World Summit Award promotes smart content for smart people. On a biennial basis, it awards e-Content that contributes to a true knowledge society and promotes it at a global congress.