Peter Diamandis runs the X Prize Foundation, which offers large cash incentive prizes to inventors who can solve grand challenges like space flight, low-cost mobile medical diagnostics and oil spill cleanup. He is the chair of Singularity University, which teaches executives and grad students about exponentially growing technologies.

Why you should listen

Watch the live onstage debate with Paul Gilding that followed Peter Diamandis' 2012 TEDTalk >>

Peter Diamandis is the founder and chair of the X Prize Foundation, a nonprofit whose mission is simply "to bring about radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity." By offering a big cash prize for a specific accomplishment, the X Prize stimulates competition and excitement around some of the planet's most important goals. Diamandis is also co-founder and chairman of Singularity University which runs Exponential Technologies Executive and Graduate Student Programs.

Diamandis' background is in space exploration -- before the X Prize, he ran a company that studied low-cost launching technologies and Zero-G which offers the public the chance to train like an astronaut and experience weightlessness. But though the X Prize's first $10 million went to a space-themed challenge, Diamandis' goal now is to extend the prize into health care, social policy, education and many other fields that could use a dose of competitive innovation.

More news and ideas from Peter Diamandis

Live from TED2016

IBM Watson offers $5 million prize for an AI X Prize presented by TED

February 17, 2016

Today at TED2016 in Vancouver, Peter Diamandis of the X Prize joined Dave Kenny of IBM Watson to announce a thrilling new prize in cognitive computing: The IBM Watson AI X Prize presented by TED, a $5 million competition to develop and demonstrate a powerful collaboration between human and artificial intelligence. The winner of this competition […]

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Taking the next giant leap into space: Peter Diamandis on TED.com

September 3, 2008

X Prize founder Peter Diamandis lays out several very good reasons to keep exploring space — and he talks about how, with the help of the X Prize and other incentives, we’re going to do just that. He also talks about the next phase of the X Prize, driving radical breakthroughs in many technologies that […]

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