Born Global Foundation Competition for Innovation in Sustainability

Boston University’s College of Engineering, in partnership with the Institute for Sustainable Energy, is pleased to announce a second annual design competition for innovations to impact the global challenge of sustainability.
The competition is open to Boston University undergraduates and masters students and submissions must come from interdisciplinary teams.


  • First Place $5,000
  • Second place $2,500
  • Third place $1,500

Winning teams will bring an interdisciplinary approach to create a newly formulated solution to a real world sustainability problem with a focus around one of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Teams must include engineering students as well students from non-engineering majors such as students from the Questrom School of Business, the College of Arts and Science, the School of Public Health, or the College of Fine Arts.

Winning teams will be judged on the efficacy of the technical innovation itself along with a business model for how such an innovation might become economically and ecologically feasible compared to current methods.

The competition is made possible via a generous gift from the Born Global Foundation headed by Dr. Kimberly Samaha, an alum of BU’s College of Engineering.

Schedule for Competition

Town Hall Kickoff Meeting

Monday, November 2
6-7 PM

A recording of the meeting can be found here:

Contest Entry Form

Notice of Interest

November 30

Project Proposal Submission

Monday, December 28
1 page overview of project with specifics on the challenge addressed, team members and faculty mentor. Proposals should be e-mailed to Associate Professor Emily Ryan  ( in PDF format.

Announcement of Down Selection

Sunday, December 20

2 Page Progress Report Due

Monday, February 15

Final Submission of Written Report

Monday, April 12
Report template will be provided.

Week of April 19

Oral Presentations

Winners Announced

Friday, April 30

Notice of Interest

Competition for Innovation in Sustainability

Intent form
  • Enter the name and email address of each team member. (Use the + sign to add each team member.)