- In 2004, in his sophomore year at Harvard University, Mark Zuckerberg created the Facebook social networking site
- Initially, the site was only available to Harvard students as a directory of personal information and photos. The Internet site then eventually expanded to other Ivy League colleges, high schools, and then the public at large. The site allows members to keep in touch with friends, meet people with common interests, play games, share photos, links and videos and chat live.
- Today, Facebook is a global phenomenon with over 300m active users around the world as of May 2009. It is the fourth most trafficked website globally, according to figures compiled by Alexa Internet, and is signing up nearly 1m new members a day, spending approximately 13.9bn minutes on the site according to Nielsen Online. The site is also popular with developers, who have built more than 52,000 Facebook applications such as “Name that Tune” and “Poker Palace”.
- The Economist looks forward to recognising Mark Zuckerberg as this year’s “No Boundaries” award winner, along with seven additional 2009 Innovation Award Winners, at The Economist’s Innovation Awards Ceremony and Innovation Summit, which take place in London on October 29th and 30th, respectively.
- The Economist’s Eighth Annual Innovation Summit provides an opportunity for delegates to meet the greatest thinkers and doers of this world in an inspirational setting, take away content relevant to their business and hear from the 2009 Innovation Award winners. This year’s line-up of speakers includes: Bright Simons, Co-founder, MPedigree, developers of a system capable of detecting whether or not medicines are counterfeit, Lesa B. Roe, Director, NASA’s Langley Research Center and Ravi Kant, Vice Chairman, Tata Motors, creators of the world’s lowest-cost car.
- Previous years’ winners in the category of “No Boundaries” Innovation include Jimmy Wales, Founder, Wikipedia, and Pierre Omidyar, Founder and Chairman of eBay.
- Journalists may request interviews and a place at The Economist’s Eighth Annual Innovation Awards Ceremony (29th) at the Science Museum and Summit (30th) at The Dorchester by contacting the press team at Waggener Edstrom on + 44 (0)20 7632 3900 or e-mailing email@example.com.
- Winner’s quote: Mark Zuckenberg, Facebook
“Challenging conventional thinking to solve problems in bold new ways has been an important part of Facebook's success, and I'm honoured and humbled to receive this reward in recognition. We'll continue to build on our hacker culture to push technical boundaries and create new and elegant solutions to make the world more open and connected.”
- Sponsor's quote: Christine Corner, Partner, Media Team at Grant Thornton
Congratulations to Mark Zuckerberg on winning this Grant Thornton-sponsored award for innovation. Mark's contribution to social networking has made a significant impact in opening up the boundaries of communication. The ability to take an idea and capture the attention of, and mobilise, so many people is testament to how innovative ideas can be commercially developed. Grant Thornton fosters innovative solutions and so is extremely proud to present this award to Mark
Boilerplate StatementsAbout The Economist
This press release has been sent by Waggener Edstrom on behalf of The Economist Innovation Awards. Want more from The Economist?
- Join over 65,000 readers already following us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/theeconomist
- Text ALERT to 80801 to receive a free text message from The Economist each Thursday afternoon highlighting the key global issues on the cover of that week’s edition before anywhere else
- Or receive weekly emails each Friday morning letting you know, in more detail, what’s in the new Economist. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org
About The Economist (www.economist.com)
The Economist is published each Friday in the UK and is available from newsagents and on subscription. With four million readers from almost every country on the planet, and editorial offices on every continent, The Economist is truly a global publication. The paper includes sections on each international region, plus Science and Technology, Books and Arts, and the weekly obituary. For profiles of our journalists, please visit www.economist.com/mediadirectory/
About The Economist’s Innovation Awards (www.economistinnovation.com)
The Economist was established in 1843 to take part in a "severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy, timid ignorance obstructing our progress". One of the chief ways in which intelligence presses forward is through innovation, which is now recognised as one of the most important contributors to economic growth. Innovation, in turn, depends on the creative individuals who dream up new ideas and turn them into reality. The Economist recognises these talented individuals through our annual Innovation Awards.