Autodesk has launched the Autodesk Foundation, an organization which will "invest in and support the most impactful nonprofit organizations using the power of design to help solve epic challenges." In an effort to aid those tackling global issues such as "climate change, access to water, and healthcare," the foundation will provide select design-oriented grantees with software, training and financial support.
The foundation has already supported a number of projects, ranging from the MASS Design Group's work on designing health facilities in parts of the world where they're need most, to KickStart International's simple agricultural irrigation tools. A full scale prototype for the Rural Studio at Auburn University, whose 20K House program challenges students to design energy efficient homes that can be built for $20,000, is also being part-funded by the program.
In addition to investing in small scale innovation, the Autodesk Foundation provides financial support and facilitates in-kind and technical support to areas struck by unexpected disasters. The company has most recently supported relief efforts for Typhoon Haiyan and the tsunami stemming from the Great East Japan Earthquake.
According to Autodesk President and CEO Carl Bass: "We have been delighted by the number of people using our technology to design a better world and solve global problems. These are the people who inspired us to align our philanthropic giving with our core business, to support more of these nonprofits to bring their ideas to market." Lynelle Cameron, President and CEO of the Autodesk Foundation and Autodesk Senior Director of Sustainability, added: "We want to support and accelerate the design-led revolution currently underway, by investing in design-driven entities that are pursuing scalable solutions with measurable impact."