Innovation & Poverty

Innovation and entrepreneurship present powerful opportunities to combat poverty. Students, faculty, and community members have opportunities to submit innovative ideas to two competitions: the UC-wide Big Ideas Contest and the UCI Designing Solutions for Poverty Award.


Big Ideas

Big Ideas is an annual contest aimed at providing funding, support, and encouragement to interdisciplinary teams of students who have “big ideas.” Since its founding in 2006, Big Ideas has inspired innovative and high-impact student-led projects aimed at solving problems that matter to this generation. By encouraging novel proposals and then supporting concrete next steps, Big Ideas is helping contest winners make an impact all over the world.

Learn more about the contest, online information sessions, timeline, and eligibility HERE.


Designing Solutions for Poverty Award

The 3rd annual Designing Solutions for Poverty Award builds on past competitions to engage the campus and broader community in submitting proposals of a design or technology-based solution with the capacity to be applied to a real world, poverty-related problem, in areas such as financial inclusion, energy, water, health, and services.

The winning idea or ideas will receive up to $20,000 in funding as well as mentorship and support.

Initial proposals must be submitted no later than March 15, 2017. Applicants are encouraged to submit their idea as soon as possible to allow more time for feedback and development.

Learn more about the contest, timeline, and how to apply HERE.