About The Contest

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The 2019 Innovation Contest is now accepting entries.

Countdown to entry deadline:

ASCE Innovation Contest

The ASCE Innovation Contest was developed as a part of The ASCE Grand Challenge and is a springboard for forward- looking infrastructure ideas. The contest is an avenue to transform the way we approach, build and design infrastructure and brings together your best ideas, projects, and theories for how to build a better future. Now in its fourth year, the ASCE Innovation Contest has a track record of reaching a worldwide audience, delivering value to all participants, and attracting industry attention. Be part of the movement and share your innovation. 

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Reasons why should you enter:

  1.  New opportunities may become available – ASCE will provide you and your winning so you will gain exposure in the industry. In addition, many of our past winners received useful feedback, advice and sometimes new opportunities during their two days networking and meeting with industry leaders at the Contest Celebration Event.
  2. If you win, you are the best in that category across all types of submitters. The ASCE Innovation contest is unique because it is open to anyone with a great idea in one of the five topic areas. Past winners include; undergraduate students, graduate students, professors and industry professionals.
  3. Winning a topic category offers an expense paid trip to ASCE Headquarters where you will present your innovation to potential investors and get feedback on your innovation from industry leaders and compete with the other five topic winners for the Overall Grand Challenge Award.
  4. If you are a student, the 2019 offers an Overall Best Student Submission Award that is only open to undergraduate or graduate students who are currently enrolled in a college level or higher academic program.

How to enter?

Complete instructions that explain how to enter, a detailed checklist for creating your submission, judging criteria and
descriptions for each topic area are available for download after you create an account on the contest site.

A short summary of characteristics sought include:

  • Critical thinking, including the ability to integrate different perspectives and “connect the dots” between disparate data points
  • An ability to communicate and articulate an idea.
  • Demonstration of Industry specific knowledge but there is no penalty for making assumptions when necessary (e.g., unknown facts, future trends, demands)
  • It is appropriate to question underlying assumptions presented by others who may have examined the problem if you are convinced a different perspective is appropriate.
  • All things being equal, innovations with broad applications will generally be scored higher.
  • In summary, we are interested in seeing how you think through the problem and a potential solution.

Please contact innovationcontest@asce.org with any questions you may have about entering the 2019 contest.

What is new about the 2019 Innovation Contest?

The 2019 Contest offers a new award for the best entrepreneur. Are you an entrepreneur? Do you have innovative ideas in one of our six topic categories; Internet of Things, Sustainable Engineering, Next Generation Transportation, Improvements in Clean Water or New Construction Materials?  And, if you have a great idea that doesn't fit into one of these categories, we have a new category titled, General Civil Infrastructure Improvement. 

If you have a great idea, please open an account and download the instructions and topic descriptions.  We hope you will enter our contest and also enter your submission into consideration for the Best Entrepreneur Award. To be eligible for this award, in addition to entering a submission to one of the topics listed above, you must also enter a scalable business plan. 



Innovation Pilot

Take a look at our student pilot efforts where we are working on broadening the scope and reach of the ASCE Innovation Contest for 2020 and beyond.

Southeast & Carolinas Student Regionals Innovation Pilot

Are you interested in becoming a judge for the contest?

This opportunity is posted on the ASCE Volunteer page

If you are interested, please review the document available below and prepare the following details; your contact information, your ASCE member number--priority is given to ASCE members, topic or topics of choice, a description of your experience with your selected topic and tell us why you are interested in becoming a judge team member or head topic judge.  Send these details to cvargas@asce.org in an email titled, "Contest Judge Application".  Deadline: January 10, 2019.

For a detailed description of the responsibilities and expectations, please download this document.