Innovation Challenge Design India

A project of the Tata Centre for Development, in partnership with the Energy & Environment Lab and EPIC-India

Local Innovation For A Better Environment

Urbanization drives economic prosperity. But, energy and environmental challenges frequently become unfortunate side effects to this unprecedented growth. The people who live and work in these urban areas contend with challenges like a lack of access to reliable and affordable energy and increased pollution from heavy traffic and industrial activity. As such, they have the potential to offer creative ideas to confront these challenges. That’s where the Innovation Challenge comes in.


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The Model

To confront urban energy and environment challenges, the University of Chicago Tata Centre for Development and implementing partners at the Energy & Environment Lab and the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago’s India team (EPIC-India) are employing a new, cutting-edge model that harnesses homegrown passion and drives solutions that work. The Innovation Challenge starts with a competition to identify the best local ideas. The winners of the crowd-sourcing competition then receive funding to work with their local governments and University of Chicago researchers to pilot their ideas. The researchers use the pilot projects to generate evidence on which urban policy interventions work, for whom, and why. If successful, the projects could become policy solutions scaled up by the government, as well as models for other cities to follow.


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