Prize & criteria

The 375.000€ Helsinki Challenge Prize aims to spur science based ideas and innovations of all kinds, shapes, and sizes. The ultimate goal is to create solutions to grand challenges and for the future well-being.

Helsinki Challenge competition entries will be evaluated through the following criteria

As a science-based competition, all of the Helsinki Challenge teams need to have a firm link with academic work and practices. Ideally, the solution and the team are founded on a firm research-base (i.e. the team’s work is based on their own research), and the solution provides academic research with new insights and as such, feeds back to academia.

Impact is the main driving force of Helsinki Challenge: both the teams and the university are trying to find new ways of maximising the impact of research through the process. Impact is essentially about sustainable change: how to measure it and evaluate the team’s progression towards a better society. It can be measured both by the scale or the depth of the change the team is aspiring towards.

Ultimately, solution is a medium for achieving impact. By this definition the successful Helsinki Challenge teams must be passionately aimed at building their solution and ways to achieve results effectively. The solution must be feasible, although it can be research-focused and abstract.

The team’s ability to reframe the problem in new ways, to connect new partnerships and collaborations in new unforeseen contexts and finding new approaches for solutionizing are categories through which the jury can measure the team’s creativity.

Originality of the solution requires understanding of past and current iterations. This demands benchmarking. Originality can be measured by asking how and why the new solution excels existing solutions.