United Nations (UN)/MIT Climate CoLab Contest for Innovative Solutions to Climate Change (Funded to 4th UN Environment Assembly) 2018j

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 In Climate CoLab contests, people from all over the world are invited to work together in developing proposals for what humanity should do about global climate change.

Application Deadline: 7th January 2018

Eligible Countries: All

Question: What combinations of Climate CoLab proposals could help achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals?

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About the Award: The MIT Climate CoLab organizes contests to solicit the world’s best ideas to prevent and adapt to climate change. This contest asks participants to combine real-world proposals and share how they can achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Participants may select and combine existing proposals on the Climate CoLab platform to develop new integrated proposals for achieving multiple SDGs.

Type: Contest

Eligibility: The UN are calling for proposals that outline an integrated set of innovative, practical solutions to help achieve the climate action goal (SDG 13) and multiple other goals.

This contest seeks proposals that:

  • Build on at least one existing Climate CoLab proposal;
  • Address how the set of proposals achieve the Sustainable Development Goal on climate action and at least one other SDG (we recommend three or more);
  • Maximize the synergies between the proposals, while minimizing the trade-offs that can occur when attempting to achieve multiple SDGs;
  • Are inventive and creative in how proposals are combined to achieve multiple SDGs.

Judges will be asked to evaluate proposals on the following criteria:

  1. Feasibility: Feasibility of the actions proposed in the proposal. Judges with different kinds of expertise will evaluate the technical, economic, social, and political feasibility of the proposals.
  2. Impact: Impact and ability to achieve multiple SDGs: This is the main aim of the proposal and so will be significant in the final judgement. However, it is not sufficient that the proposal achieves a large number of the SDGs, but is not feasible or doesn’t recognize the possible trade-offs with other sustainability goals. The proposals should aim to address the SDGs in an integrated manner, but should be explicit about the areas in which it is unable to achieve change.
  3. Novelty: Novelty of the proposal’s ideas. Innovative thinking and originality in a proposal will be valued more than encyclopedic knowledge.
  4. Presentation Quality: Proposals that are well-presented will be favored over those that aren’t. Presentation quality includes how well written a proposal is, how well it uses graphics or other visual elements, and how compelling are its artistic representations of possible future worlds (if any).

Proposals can include actions that are at any stage of development:

  • Well thought-out ideas that require additional research, design or planning;
  • Comprehensive strategies that are ready for prototyping or implementation;
  • Initiatives that have already achieved success and are ready to be scaled;
  • Best practices that need refinement or support to scale up.

Number of Awards: Not specified

Value of Award: Judges’ Choice and Popular Choice Winner(s) will:

  • be invited to attend the official launch event for GEO-6 during the Fourth UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-4) in March 2019 in Nairobi, Kenya
  • showcase their proposals to policy-makers, business leaders, Intergovernmental Organizations and other influential stakeholders at UNEA
  • be recognized by the UN Environment’s Office of the Chief Scientist
  • be given the unique opportunity to meet with the United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Environment
  • be awarded one economy-class roundtrip airfare ticket, and a daily subsistence allowance to support their travel to Nairobi.
  • receive wide recognition and visibility by MIT Climate CoLab.

Judges will evaluate proposals, and deliberate as a group to select the Semi-Finalists, Finalists, Winners, and possibly other awardee(s) at their discretion.  Judgments of desirability are also made in the final stage of the contest, by the Climate CoLab community through popular vote, and by the Judges through their selection of the Judges’ Choice winner(s). Additional awards and prizes may be given by either the Judges or MIT Climate CoLab in order to recognize other top proposals.

How to Apply: Interested applicants may submit Proposals here.

All entrants must agree to the Contest rules and Terms of Use before applying.

Visit the Program Webpage for Details

Award Providers: UN Environment, MIT Center for Collective Intelligence, Global Environment Outlook (GEO)


  • Ifeoma Chuks is a naturally-skilled writer. She has written and contributed to more than 6000 articles all over the internet that have formed solid experiences for particularly aspiring, young people around the globe.

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