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Introducing the Challenge Prizes Practitioner Network

In last few years, buy there has been a significant growth in the number of inducement prizes and competitions launched. An increasing number of private, try public and third sector organisations are eager to experiment the use of inducement prizes to trigger new solutions that could solve the challenges they face.

In the UK, Nesta and the UK Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) co-founded the Centre for Challenge Prizes three years ago with the mission to grow the challenge prize field through a centre of expertise, and to find, test and reward innovations that can first or most effectively demonstrate impact on the issues affecting our lives.

Since its inception, the Centre has rapidly grown its reach and reputation by running prizes across various fields and establishing strategic partnerships with the EU Commission, USAID, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNDP, the World Bank, Nordic Innovation and Vinnova. It is now an internationally renowned centre for expertise in the design and development of inducement prizes. In the last three years we have seen a growing demand across Europe and internationally to design and deliver challenge prizes on a broad range of different areas to achieve positive social impact for our society.

We are committed to the continuous improvement of the challenge prize method and understand this can only be achieved through collaboration, knowledge sharing and partnership building. For this reason, and with the amazing support of my colleagues, I am leading the set-up of the Challenge Prize Practitioner Network with two aims:

  • To expand our international reach and identify organisations with whom to generate and share learning and insights on the design and use of challenge prizes
  • To run new prizes in collaboration with even broader societal impact

We invite practitioners from all over the world to join the network to do practical work in the following areas:

  • Identifying thematic areas for societal challenges that potential prizes will solve
  • Developing strategic, practical connections between different programmes
  • Identifying relevant partners for co-development of challenge prizes

We also encourage you to work with us to focus on continuous improvements to challenge prizes:

  • Better understanding of challenge prize design and types of challenge prizes
  • Better understanding of key prize design and delivery issues
  • Creation of guiding principles and good practice on challenge prizes
  • Better understanding of how challenge prizes could be used alongside other innovation incentive tools

As immediate next steps, we will be hosting blogs from some of our practitioners from all over the world about their challenge prize strategies. The Nesta technology team is working on the development of a digital platform to build a stronger community of challenge prize solvers around Europe. Last but not least, I am working with my colleague Nes Parker from Deloitte, author of ‘The craft of inducement prize design,’ on a report to analyse the top challenge prize trends in the United States and Europe.

For more information and if you’re interested in joining the network, please write to me on

See more here

Written by Gather

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