Current prizes

You can also see these and any news on the Nesta Challenges' site.


The European Social Innovation Competition 2020

This challenge will reward the most innovative approaches to reduce the overall environmental footprint and improve the societal impact of the fashion market, help make it more accessible and fair, and aspire to change behaviors in a sustainable way.

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Smart Ageing Prize

The Smart Ageing Prize is seeking solutions that support, empower and inspire older adults to engage in entrepreneurship and contribute their extensive skills.


CareerTech Challenge Prize

The CareerTech Challenge Prize will provide £1.2 million and tailored packages of expert support for the development of digital solutions which improve career information, advice and guidance

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Longitude Explorer Prize

The Longitude Explorer Prize is calling on young people across the UK to develop innovative AI solutions to society’s biggest issues, including living longer, living healthier and living greener.

CitizenLab mobile

Tech to Connect Challenge

The aim of the Tech to Connect Challenge is to help develop ideas enabling civil society to combat social isolation using technology.


Affordable Credit Challenge

The aim of the Affordable Credit Challenge is to widen people’s access to affordable credit provided by community lenders. To help achieve this, the Challenge is supporting partnerships between community lenders and fintechs.


Legal Access Challenge

The £500,000 Legal Access Challenge is looking for innovative digital solutions that will help individuals and SMEs to better understand and resolve their legal problems.

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Open Up 2020 Challenge

Open Up 2020 is a £1.5m prize fund to unlock the power of open banking for UK consumers. It sought products that use open banking to help people better manage their money.

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Million Cool Roofs Challenge

The Million Cool Roofs Challenge is a $2 million global competition to rapidly scale up the deployment of highly solar-reflective “cool” roofs in developing countries suffering heat stress and lacking widespread access to cooling services.

Prizes in the works


Flying High

Shaping the future of drones in UK cities. UK cities need to consider what they want the future of drone applications to look like, and thinking this through in urban areas allows us to tackle the most complex and challenging issues head on.

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Surgical Equity Prize

We believe there is an urgent need to develop more adaptable low-cost surgical tools and better system design, support and services that fit into different environments.

For this reason, we are designing a Challenge Prize as part of a broader campaign to raise awareness, leverage knowledge and expertise, and harness the requisite technical and financial resources.

Past Prizes

Plastic waste

The European Social Innovation Competition 2019

The 2019 Competition is seeking the most innovative projects, products, services, business models and collaborations that tackle plastic waste.

Toyota Mobility Foundation

Mobility Unlimited Challenge

The $4 million Mobility Unlimited Challenge supports radical improvements in the mobility and independence of people with lower-limb paralysis through smarter assistive technology.

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Open Up Challenge

This is a prize fund backing ambitious products that will help small businesses save time and money, find better services, reduce stress and discover the intelligence in their financial data. By the end of 2018, we'll have awarded £4.5m in equity-free funding to 25 financial technology companies.

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The European Social Innovation Competition 2018

Three €50,000 prizes from the European Commission for the most innovative projects to empower young people in a changing economy.

Fall armyworm

Fall Armyworm Tech Prize

The prize is seeking digital tools and approaches that provide timely, context-specific information that enable smallholder farmers and those who support them to identify, treat, and track incidence of fall armyworm in Africa.


Smart Ageing Prize

A Challenge Prize by the AAL Association for products and services that use innovative digital technologies to support older people to participate fully in social life.

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Inventor Prize

The £50,000 Inventor Prize is looking for the UK’s best inventions that help make people’s lives better. We are looking for innovative and exciting new products that haven’t been on sale before.

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The Good Help Award

The Good Help Award is one way that we hope to find out more about ‘good help’ and how it helps people take action. We want to find out who is providing ‘good help’ and to celebrate and share the vital work they are doing.

Data-Driven Farming Prize

Data Driven Farming Prize

The prize sought tools and approaches that source, analyze and translate data into actionable, timely and context-specific information for smallholder farmers to improve value from agricultural productivity.

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Longitude Explorer Prize

The Internet of Things has the potential to make us happier, healthier and more connected, transforming the way we live. We challenge young people to develop innovative, practical solutions that use the Internet of Things to improve health and well-being of people in the UK.

Families included prize

Families Included Prize

The Families Included Prize is looking for great ideas, projects and solutions from Essex that involve local families with young children (0-5 years) in opportunities that enrich their lives. Ideas can relate to any aspect of life including personal, professional and social experiences.

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Inclusive Technology Prize

Encouraging innovation in products, technologies and systems that enable disabled people equal access to life's opportunities.

Ageing Well Challenge

Ageing Well Challenge

The Ageing Well Challenge Prize looked for ideas to improve the lives of older people by reducing social isolation or increasing mobility. Specifically, we sought approaches that would encourage lots more people to give their time, resources and skills to address this challenge.

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Big Green Challenge

The Big Green Challenge was a £1m challenge prize designed to encourage and support community-led responses to climate change.

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Dynamic Demand Challenge

The Dynamic Demand Challenge Prize was designed to stimulate new products, technologies or services using data to achieve reduced carbon emissions by shifting energy demand to off peak times or through excess renewable generation.

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