Call for Innovators for the Future

The Call for Innovators for the Future aims to identify innovative projects that are making a positive social impact in the areas of Empowerment, Life, and Society. The submission period for the 2020 Call for Innovators has closed, with applications coming from 92 countries. The review process leading to the final selection begins in August. Get to know our Experts and Jurors, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date and find out more about the inspiring work of the Call for Innovators finalists.

We seek to identify projects that help communities, building on our motto: innovation is the future delivered. You can nominate an initiative you know of, or self-nominate a project you’re affiliated with. We are especially interested in learning about work that may have gone unrecognized on the global stage, whether these initiatives are very recent or more established, provided they are relevant for today and the future.

These are the qualities that we look for in our innovators and their projects:

  • Future-oriented & optimistic:
    Believing in our capacity to inspire positive change and build a better world and a better future for all.
  • Unorthodox & passionate:
    Bold ideas that show ingenuity, passion and dedication and that move beyond traditional definitions, concerns and binaries.
  • Sustainable & responsible:
    Ideas that use resources with care and do not come at the cost of the well-being of others.
  • Specific & impact-driven:
    Projects that target clear needs of communities and their environment. Ideas that are meaningful to people.

Semi-Finalists

The Call for Innovators will select the semi-finalists inspiring and impactful projects and recognize them in as part of the UN75 Global Conversation project. These projects will be portrayed online in a digital yearbook as recognition of the Innovators’ work. Their work will be shared through The Futures Project’s network.

Finalists

Of these 75 projects, 15 semi-finalists will additionally have their projects reviewed by and receive feedback from our Jury of Leaders, comprised of CEOs, NGO directors, political leaders, impact fund managers, foundation executives, and leaders from other fields. Participants will receive feedback from this jury of leaders and training and practical support on pitch preparation. They will be invited to pitch their projects in front of a jury of high-level leaders, funders, investors, and supporters at The Futures Project’s Flagship Conference in December 2020.

Top 5

The Futures Project will select up to 5 winning projects to participate in our highly-customised Social Impact Accelerator in Spring 2021. This four-month experience will include one-on-one mentoring with experts and industry leaders, interaction with our global network, and an intensive 5-7 days, in-person training week in Germany. While the Accelerator programme will last for 4 months, participants will receive individualised mentorship for a full year. Participants will regularly learn from and work with our broad range of renowned partners from around the world, including business leaders, foundations, NGOs, and media partners. Through participation in this programme, Innovators will receive practical training and opportunities for collaboration that will launch their projects into the next phases of impact for the future.

Step 1 Registration and expression of interest

Register with us and fill out the pre-application form
The pre-application form acts as an eligibility check. We will accept expression of interest forms up to July 3rd and will inform you about selection or rejection as we screen the applications.

Step 2 Full Application Form

Call ends July 31st, 2020

Fill out the full application form by July 15th

Step 3 Screening

Starts July 1st, 2020

Applications will be screened on a rolling basis based on a check for plagiarism and values-alignment with The Futures Project by TFP team.

Step 4 Expert Evaluation

Starts August 17, 2020

Each applications will be reviewed by a panel of 3-6 experts from academia, business, politics, arts and civil society. To the extent possible, applications will be reviewed by Expert Reviewers with knowledge or experience in the same domain as the applicant’s project. The selected semi-finalists inspiring and impactful projects will be recognized as part of the UN75 Global Conversation project. These projects will be portrayed online in a digital yearbook and shared widely through the Futures Project’s networks.

Step 5 Jury Review

Starts October 5, 2020

Our international Jury of Leaders, comprised of CEOs, NGO directors, political leaders, impact fund managers, foundation executives, and leaders from other fields will select the finalists projects based on understanding of the problem, solution and the team behind the projects. Participants will receive feedback from this Jury of Leaders and training and practical support on pitch preparation.

Step 6 Final Presentation

Dec 8 and 9, 2020

The finalists will pitch their projects in front of a jury of high-level leaders, funders, investors, and supporters at The Futures Project’s Flagship Conference in Munich in December 2020. The process of selection of the top 5 will include personal interviews, group sessions and a pitch presentation.

Accelerator Programme

Spring 2021

The Futures Project will select 5 winning projects to participate in our highly-customised Social Impact Accelerator in Spring 2021. This four-month experience will include one-on-one mentoring with experts and industry leaders, interaction with our global network, and an intensive 5-7 day, in-person training week in Berlin. Though the Accelerator programme will last for 4 months, participants will receive individualised mentorship for a full year. Participants will regularly learn from and work with our broad range of renowned partners from around the world.

The call

Ends July 31,2020

Expert Evaluation

Starts August 17, 2020

Jury Review

Starts October 5, 2020

TFP Conference

December 8 and 9, 2020

Accelerator Programme

Spring 2021