Horizon Prize for Social Innovation in Europe 2019 (Up to €2million in Prizes)

Horizon Prize for Social Innovation in Europe 2019 (Up to €2million in Prizes)

Deadline: July 31, 2018 and February 28, 2019

Applications are now open for the Horizon Prize for Social Innovation in Europe. Develop the most innovative mobility solutions for older people? The European Commission’s Horizon Prize for Social Innovation will reward the best solutions for improving the travel mobility of older people. The prize was launched during the “Opening up to an era of social innovation” conference in Lisbon on 27 November 2017.

Horizon Prizes are challenge prizes which offer a cash reward to whoever can most effectively meet a defined challenge. The aim of the prize is to improve the mobility of older people by providing innovative mobility solutions allowing them to maintain independence and actively participate in social life. While the main target group is the elderly (aged 65+), the solutions developed in the context of this contest may also be beneficial to other parts of the population, such as people with reduced mobility.

Specific Challenge

Innovations are new or significantly improved goods, services, processes and methods which are social when they aim at gains for society rather than for the individual, i.e. when they are good for society and enhance society’s capacity to act. Very often social challenges cannot be met with traditional recipes and approaches.

The European Commission plans to launch a € 2 Million Horizon prize on social innovation in the area of Aging Population to stimulate novel replicable solutions for the benefit of European citizens. By 2025 more than 20% of Europeans will be 65 or over, with a particularly rapid increase in the number of people aged over 80 years.

This contest focuses on the out-of-home movement of people from one place to another. Improved mobility has a positive impact on older people’s independence and participation in socio-economic life (resulting in benefits for themselves and for society as a whole), and also facilitates their access to educational, medical, cultural and other services. Ultimately, mobility is critical to the wellbeing of older people, and to their physical and mental health. Public transport does not always meet the special needs of the elderly, notably those with mobility or other impairments – whether at city level or when preparing a multimodal journey across Europe.

Expected Result

The solutions proposed should represent significant long-term improvements for specific target groups, such as elderly people living in isolated areas, or older persons with reduced mobility3 in urban areas. Applicants should also explain their solution’s impact with respect to the creation of new market opportunities and jobs e.g. in innovative small companies, transport operators, social economy start-ups or NGOs at local, regional or national level. The solutions will be assessed based on progress made – and evidenced – against the award criteria between opening of the contest and submission of the application. These award criteria, set forth below, further clarify the expected results.


Based on the evaluation, the following prizes will be awarde:

  • First prize of EUR 1,000,000
  • Four prizes of EUR 250,000


  • The contest is open to any legal entity (including natural persons) or group of legal entities established in an EU Member State or in a country associated to Horizon 2020 (Iceland, Norway, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, Israel, Moldova, Switzerland, Faroe Islands, Ukraine, Tunisia, Georgia, and Armenia.

Evaluation Criteria

The prize will be awarded, after closure of the contest, to the contestants who in the opinion of the jury demonstrate a solution that best addresses the following cumulative criteria. Further clarification of these award criteria will be published in the Rules of Contest.

  • Social impact
  • Economic impact
  • Community engagement
  • Scalability and replicability
  • Sustainability of the solution
  • Originality and creativity
  • Measurability


While registration of interest ends on July 31, 2018, submissions will be accepted until 28 February 2019 and the prize will be awarded in the second or third quarter of 2019. For questions specifically relating to this prize, please contact [email protected].

For more information, visit Horizon Prize for Social Innovation in Europe.