Kellogg-Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge 2018 – Win up to $10,000 and trip to London & LA!

Deadline: January 20, 2018

The Kellogg-Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge 2018 is now open for entries. The Challenge seeks to identify the next generation of sustainable finance practitioners, connect emerging leaders with industry professionals, and foster even greater emphasis on sustainability at graduate schools around the world. They are looking to identify outstanding proposals offering novel investment strategies to meet some of the most pressing global challenges ahead.

Every year, the Kellogg School of Management and Morgan Stanley partner to host the challenge where teams of graduate students from around the globe develop and pitch creative financial approaches to tackle our world’s most pressing challenges. This competition requires you to propose and defend a sustainable impact investment strategy that uses finance and investment tools to create an innovative solution to an environmental or societal challenge. Integral to this competition are first, that you are creating a financial vehicle, and second, that your financial vehicle will have social impact.

Contestants must propose and defend a strategy that uses finance and investment tools rather than an operating enterprise to address an environmental or societal challenge. The competition is an opportunity to apply core finance principles to target the economic, social and environmental challenges that drive the field of sustainable investing. Pitches might focus on areas like water, energy, food, social mobility, climate change, education or healthcare, among others. Contestants are encouraged to apply the entire spectrum of investment tools, styles and asset classes.

Awards and Benefits

Ten finalist teams will be announced by March 12, 2018. These teams will be flown to London and will be provided with two nights of lodging, and are expected to present their proposal at the finals competition on April 13, 2018. Please note that any team member not in attendance at the finals competition will not share in any prizes awarded to that team.

$15,000 in prizes will be awarded to the winning teams. Awards will be made for the overall quality of the proposals based on the judging criteria.

  • Overall First Place:  $10,000
  • Overall Runner-Up:  $5,000

Along with the overall first place prize money of $10,000, the winning team will be invited to attend and present on a panel with Dave Chen, CEO and Principal of Equilibrium Capital and co-founder of the Challenge at the Milken Global Conference in Los Angeles. The conference convenes approximately 3,500 of the best minds in the world to tackle the most stubborn challenges.


  • Graduate students from around the world are invited to participate.
  • Teams are limited to a maximum of four members
  • All of whom must be enrolled in a graduate program at the time of the prospectus submission, and the team cannot include more than one member who is pursuing an Executive MBA.
  • A team may include members from different graduate schools.
  • All ideas must be the original ideas of the team members.
  • Each team is required to submit a two-page prospectus outlining their proposal.

Submission Requirements

  • Two-page prospectuses must be submitted by February 20, 2018 11:59PM CT.
  • The prospectus should outline a unique sustainable investment strategy.
  • The selection committee is familiar with the broad area of sustainable investing, so avoid overemphasizing general observations about this section of the market. A list of required elements is below.

Judging Criteria

The following criteria are applicable to both the first and final rounds of the competition:

  • Creativity & Financial Innovation
    Impact and scale
  • Feasibility
  • Quality of due diligence and financials (20%)
  • Presentation


Teams of graduate students are invited to submit a two-page prospectus by February 20, 2018, 11:59PM CST that outlines an innovative financial vehicle that addresses a sustainability challenge and meets the requirements of an institutional investor (social operating enterprises are not applicable).

Request a Mentor by January 23, 2018

Submit a Prospectus to submit your two page prospectus.

For more information, visit Kellogg-Morgan Stanley Challenge.