This is not a business plan competition, but there are thousands of such competitions available around the world. If you are already deep into your solution and looking to design the specifics of a social intervention, business plan, or non-profit start-up and are looking for funding, mentorship, or support to start your project, then you should consider entering a different type of competition. However, if you are already thinking about a solution but are interested in taking a step back and learning more about the problem and landscape of other solutions already being tried, then Map the System is for you.
After learning about the problem and landscape of current solutions, you are asked to identify “impact gaps.” Depending on what you find in your research, you might find that one of the gaps you identify is indeed related to the solution you had in mind before starting this competition. You are welcome to include it in your presentation and explain how your learning from the mapping process would aid the design of such an intervention, but to be successful in the Map the System process, you will also need to identify a range of other impact gaps. You might include information about gaps in government regulation, opportunities for knowledge sharing or improvements to existing efforts, or other ideas for new interventions.
If you focus ONLY on “your” solution to the problem, you will not be successful in this process. But if you use the Map the System process to learn a lot more about your chosen issue, it should contribute to your ability to come up with a successful intervention in the future – whether that is an internship or job opportunity you discover through this process, or a new venture you launch related to this topic in the future.