Deepika Kurup has been determined to solve the global water crisis since she was 14 years old, after she saw kids outside her grandparents' house in India drinking water that looked too dirty even to touch. Her research began in her family kitchen — and eventually led to a major science prize. Hear how this teenage scientist developed a cost-effective, eco-friendly way to purify water.
Deepika Kurup is a scientist, speaker, social entrepreneur and student at Harvard University. She has been passionate about solving the global water crisis ever since she was in middle school. After witnessing children in India drinking dirty water, Kurup developed a water purification system that harnesses solar energy to remove contaminants from water.
Recognized as "America’s Top Young Scientist" in 2012, Kurup won the grand prize in the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge. In 2014 she was honored with the "United States President's Environmental Youth Award" and represented the United States in Stockholm, Sweden at the international Stockholm Junior Water Prize. Most recently Kurup was named one of the Forbes' "30 Under 30: Energy" and was the National Geographic Explorer Award Winner in the 2015 Google Science Fair. She attended the 2016 (and 2013) White House Science Fair. Currently she is CEO and founder Catalyst for World Water, a social enterprise aimed at deploying the technology she developed in water-scarce areas.