Friday, September 16, 2016

From the inbox: The Roddenberry Prize

Maybe time to really build the Tricoder (with DNA barcoding integrated).

Roddenberry Foundation Celebrates StarTrek50 With An Innovation Competition

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the television premiere of Star Trek, the Roddenberry Foundation announced a million dollar prize competition to encourage innovation that will build a 'boldly better' future. The inaugural Roddenberry Prize consists of one $400,000 grand prize and four $150,000 innovation awards, disbursed in lump sums to five recipients, complementing several new foundation initiatives. 

Each year the Roddenberry Prize (like the foundation, named for the creator of Star Trek) will recognize five ideas that will help bring about the vision of the future presented in Star Trek.  The prize fits in with the other work of the foundation, which is focused on supporting people and institutions looking to improve the human condition.

The goals are broad, and science and technology are just one of the broad categories wherein we can build the better future we've been watching for half a century.  The judging criteria are perhaps the best way of trying to envision the entries contest organizers want.  They are looking for solutions notably distinct from other efforts in the same area and capable of transforming the intended audience.  All the same, entrants will have to demonstrate their capability of implementing their idea through a combination of their skills, experience and plans.

The competition window is short, running from September 8 to November 16.  The winning entries will be recognized in January (trying to build synergy with the new Star Trek series expected to premiere at the same time).  The prize money is intended to support the expansion of the winning ideas to a larger scale. 

The application deadline is November 16, 2016.

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