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What Will the Future of Infrastructure Be?

Thursday, March 17, 2016

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A trade association for equipment manufacturers is inviting entries in its contest to collect innovative ideas for overhauling America’s crumbling infrastructure.

The Infrastructure Vision 2050 Challenge, launched by the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM), is a three-phase competition seeking to identify the most critical problem with U.S. infrastructure and create a solution to fix it.

A total of $150,000 in prize money will be awarded, organizers say.

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The Association of Equipment Manufacturers is inviting contestants to imagine how infrastructure will move people, freight and utilities around the U.S. in 2050.

“We need to engage innovators who we haven’t heard from before and who have the ability to imagine how people, freight, energy and information will move in the country of tomorrow—even as far out as the year 2050,” said AEM President Dennis Slater.

“With the HeroX crowdsourcing model, we’re confident we can bring these solutions to life.”

The competition, announced earlier this year, has extended the deadline for the first stage—the Complain Phase, according to HeroX, which is hosting the contest.

Competition Scope

Through its challenge, AEM is asking participants to imagine how infrastructure will move people, freight and utilities around the United States by the year 2050.

To be eligible, ideas must fit into one of the following categories:

  • Infrastructure to move people;
  • Infrastructure to move products and raw materials; or
  • Infrastructure to provide utilities.

The contest takes place in three stages, and submissions for the first two phases are currently being accepted.

‘Complain Phase’

This first stage of the competition invites the public to identify and describe the biggest infrastructure challenge facing their community.

The total prize pool for this stage is $5,000—10 finalists will receive $250 each, and one overall winner will receive $2,500.

The deadline to enter has been extended to April 5.

‘Dream Phase’

In the second stage, AEM is looking for new thinking and solutions, especially from non-experts; participants are asked to envision breakthrough solutions that could solve one or more problems with U.S. infrastructure.

A judging panel and crowd voting will determine the finalists and winners in the three phases of the competition, as participants vie for a total prize pool of $150,000.

A total of $45,000 in prize money is available in this stage; five winners will receive $9,000 each.

Entry deadline is May 31.

‘Build Phase’

The third phase of the program seeks to take the second phase a step further and solicits plans to implement those solutions on a larger scale as a pilot program or test case in the real world.

The total cash prize for this stage is $100,000.

This stage has not yet opened for submissions, but is scheduled to launch in mid-summer 2016. The deadline to enter will be announced.

A combination of a judging panel and crowd voting will determine the finalists and winners of the three phases of the competition.

Complete rules and submission requirements are available here.


Tagged categories: Association of Equipment Manufacturers; Competitions; Contests; Infrastructure; North America; Program/Project Management; Transportation

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