European Social Innovation Competition

Entries Due: 4.4 2019. Challenge prize run by the European Commission across all Horizon 2020 associated countries. The Competition calls all Europeans to come up with solutions to the problems affecting our society. The 2019 Theme is “Challenging plastic waste”.

Open for ideas and projects that reduce plastic waste and littering through changing and improving existing processes or through introducing brand-new products and initiatives. These innovations need to reduce the amount of plastic waste created or encourage and enable the greater re-use and recycling of plastic waste.

Contest Stages

  • Phase 1: Out of the total of eligible entries received by the deadline, 30 semi-finalists will be selected to receive mentoring support and further progress their ideas. They are invited to take part in a Social Innovation Academy in Italy and to network with other European organisations and potential partners in their field.
  • Phase 2: Out of the 30 semi-finalists, 10 finalists will be invited to the awards ceremony where the 3 final winners received a prize of €50,000 each.
  • Phase 3: in 2020, the competition amongst the 30 semi-finalists will be re-opened and award the 2019 project having achieved the most significant results with an impact prize of €50,000.

Solutions should be scalable and target change at the systemic level: either locally, nationally or Europe wide, and be rooted in one of the following areas

  • Reducing the consumption of single use plastic products
  • Recycling reusing, and upcycling existing plastic waste
  • Dealing with accumulated plastic waste in landfills and the environment
  • Changing consumer behaviours, retail and wider business practices to reduce levels of plastic waste and/or increase recycling and re-use
  • Implementing alternative business models and optimising supply chains to reduce plastic waste and/or increase recycling and re-use
  • Introducing new materials fit for a circular economy or that offer sustainable alternatives to fossil-based plastics