1. What is the World Economic Forum Technology Pioneers community?

The Technology Pioneers is a global community of start-up and growth-stage companies with the potential to significantly impact business and society through the design, development and deployment of new technologies. The community launched in 2000.

2. What is the objective of the Technology Pioneers community?

The programme aims to give next generation innovators a voice in solving global issues and enables them to contribute their ideas in multi-stakeholder meetings. Technology Pioneers contribute to the exploration of future trends, analysis of how new technologies transform business models, and assessment of implications for individuals, industry, governments and civil society.

3. What is the benefit of being a Technology Pioneer?

Being a Technology Pioneer means:

– Being part of a community of innovators and entrepreneurs – learning from each other and working together to find innovative solutions to global issues

– Interacting with industry leaders, scientists, academics and governments to explore how emerging technologies are impacting the world

– Participating in Forum meetings*, Platform workstreams, and Global Future Councils.

– Gaining visibility through the Forum’s wide coverage in traditional and social media

*Technology Pioneers are not automatically invited to the Annual Meeting in Davos

4. How are Technology Pioneers selected?

The World Economic Forum evaluates all candidates against the community's selection criteria.

5. What are the Technology Pioneer selection criteria?


Potential Technology Pioneers are evaluated against the following criteria:

- Innovation: truly innovative in bringing to market technology with an effective business model; considered a technology leader in its field.

- Impact: has the potential to make a substantial long-term impact on business and society.

- Growth company: less than 10 years old from company inception; be an independent, privately held company.

- Leadership: visionary leadership with the ability to drive the company to success, and be able to contribute time and expertise to the Forum’s work.

- Funding: Has received a solid amount of funding

- Valuation: Less than $1 billion

6. What information about Technology Pioneer community members is publically-available?

Business information provided by candidates remains confidential and is used by the World Economic Forum for the sole purpose of evaluating companies’ potential to become Technology Pioneers. The World Economic Forum is required to respect the confidentiality of applicants’ information.

7. Which industries and regions do Technology Pioneers operate in?

Technology Pioneers come from a wide range of sectors, such as life sciences, health, energy, environment, information technologies, and new media. Companies from all sectors and all regions are encouraged to apply. Regional Technology Pioneers will be evaluated in a regional context.

8. How can I apply for the Technology Pioneers community?

Application link is available on the World Economic Forum Technology Pioneers website. The application for the 2021 cohort is now open.

9. What is the deadline to apply?

The application deadline for the 2021 cohort is 31 October, 2020.

10. When are Technology Pioneers announced?

Technology Pioneers 2020 cohort will be publicly announced in June 2020.

11. Is there any fee associated with a Technology Pioneers application?


The World Economic Forum does not charge applicants at any stage of the selection process. Technology Pioneer community membership does not entail a membership fee.

12. How long do Technology Pioneers stay in the community?

Technology Pioneers remain part of the community for two years, with various opportunities to interact with other members.

13. Examples of Technology Pioneers

Color Genomics (2018), Indigo Agriculture (2017), Ginkgo Bioworks (2016), BlaBlaCar (2015), Airbnb (2014), Dropbox (2012), Kickstarter (2012), Spotify (2011), Twitter (2010), Proteus Digital Health (2009), Mozilla Corporations (2007) and Google (2002).

The Technology Pioneers 2020 were announced on 16 June 2020, and can be found here.

14. How can I contact the Technology Pioneers team?

Email: tech.pioneers@weforum.org