Top 10 Innovation Competitions

In modern societies everyone is enabled to create the next big thing. Innovation competitions encourage independent experts from various industries to take a part in managing innovation challenges. By definition, innovation competition is an attempt by independent agents to solve an innovation challenge of a certain company.


The list of Top 10 Innovation Competitions was created based on the following criteria.

The Innovation Competition must:

  1. Have more impactful and powerful outctome/solution, than an output of product development process for corporate clients;
  2. Request for breakthrough and disruptive innovations, while incremental innovation might come as an additional option;
  3. Apply crowdsourcing practices;
  4. Have well-established mentorship and leadership program;
  5. Be regionally or globally acknowledged and authoritative competition.


Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovation Competitions, that may generate breathtaking innovations in the nearest future.


Challenge Discovery Program. Innocentive

InnoCentive’s Challenge Discovery Program (CDP) enables companies to accelerate innovation by rapidly engaging InnoCentive to crowdsource their Challenge, by connecting companies to global community of 365,000 problem Solvers, who generate novel ideas and innovative ways to solve your biggest problems that impact your business or organization.

Creative Business Cup. CBC Denmark

Organized by Creative Business Cup, Denmark. The purpose of Creative Business Cup is to strengthen the business skills of creative entrepreneurs. It is a global year-round initiative that empowers entrepreneurs in the creative industries, helping them grow their business ideas, connecting them to investors and the global markets, and strengthening their innovative capabilities to the benefit of industry and society.

Hult Prize. Hult Prize Foundation

Organized by the Hult Prize Foundation, USA. The Hult Prize competition is an annual event. It aims to create and launch the most compelling social business ideas—start-up enterprises that tackle grave issues faced by billions of people. Winners receive USD1 Million in seed capital, as well as mentorship and advice from the international business community.  

Imagine Cup Innovation Competition. Microsoft Imagine

Organized by Microsoft Corporation, USA. Imagine Cup is a global competition that empowers the next generation of computer science students to team up and use their creativity, passion and knowledge of technology to create applications that shape how we live, work and play. Students can win $100,000, ith prizing that includes mentorship opportunities with industry leaders, an Azure grant and cash, Imagine Cup can help students take their project to the next level.

Innovation & Entrepreneurship International Competition.  Shenzhen Government, China

Organized by Shenzhen Government, China. This April it will be the first time when Shenzhen, China will host the First Innovation & Entrepreneurship International Competition. This competition is the penultimate event in a series of competitions held around the world that will exhibit innovative thinking and game-changing advances in technology and industry. Participation is free of cost and allows participants to consult with senior industry specialists and therefore improve both their projects and their experience of working with leaders in the China market. Winners receive prizes RMB ¥100,000 (about AUD $20,000) to RMB ¥30,000 (about AUD $6,000).

Innovation Prize for Africa. African Innovation Foundation (AIF)

Organized by African Innovation Foundation (AIF), Switzerland. Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) is an annual competition, enabling and encouraging African pioneers to develop creative ideas and techniques to overcome some of the challenges faced by the continent and support sustainable development. IPA is open to innovators, academics, entrepreneurs living and based in Africa. The winners are awarded from $100,000 to $5000.

Intel Science Talent Search. Intel STS

Organized by Intel STS, USA. The Intel Science Talent Search (Intel STS), a program of Society for Science & the Public, is the oldest and most prestigious pre-college science competition in the USA. Each year around 1,800 students from American high schools enter the competition. Through the process 40 candidates are selected as Intel STS finalists who compete to win $150,000 - $350,000. 

IXL Innovation Olympics. IXL Center and GIM Institute

The IXL Innovation Olympics is a Global 8 week consulting competition started in 2006. It is co-sponsored by IXL Center, and the non-profit Global Innovation Management Institute. 5 graduate student teams tackle a strategic growth challenge set and paid for by a corporate or non-profit sponsor. There are up to 10 challenges per edition. Teams of 4-6 students compete with the other teams to produce the best business concept. The competition runs four times a year. The winning teams gain the prizes of $4,000 and $2,000 accordingly.

The Innovation Challenge. Skild Inc

Organized by Skild Inc., USA. It is the World's largest and most established online platform for innovation competition and business challenges. As for today,  8,000 students from over 88 countries have tackled pressing issues facing sponsor companies. Over 1,500 global innovation experts form a judging community tasked with selecting the most innovative teams.

The Qualcomm Tricorder. XPRIZE

Organized by Xprize, USA. The Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE is a $10 million global competition to stimulate innovation and integration of precision diagnostic technologies, helping consumers make their own reliable health diagnoses anywhere, anytime.


The list of the Top 10 Innovation Competitions


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