COINS Grand Challenge 2018 for Innovators and Entrepreneurs (Fully-funded to San Antonio, TX)

COINS Grand Challenge 2018 for Innovators and Entrepreneurs (Fully-funded to San Antonio, TX)

Deadline: April 6, 2018

Applications for the COINS Grand Challenge 2018 are now open. The COINS Grand Challenge is a global competition to uncover innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders with ideas that can improve the built environment. It is first and foremost a competition to find new ideas or innovative approaches that will solve problems and enable the construction industry to make a positive impact on society.

Whether you are an undergraduate, postgrad student, recent graduate, young entrepreneur or industry specialist, they want to hear from you if you believe your idea has the potential to help the construction industry and society. All finalists receive an expense paid trip to San Antonio, TX for the Grand Final.


The COINS Grand Challenge consists of two competitions (Undergraduate and Open), each with 2 challenges that are aimed at encouraging innovators and entrepreneurs to come forward with new ideas and approaches to help improve the construction industry for the benefit of the industry and society. The competitions focus on areas that address global challenges facing the construction industry.

  • Challenge 1 – New and Emerging Technologies
  • Challenge 2 – Leadership


  • Showcase yourself and your ideas to some of the world’s leading construction companies, private investors and academics.
  • Win valuable prizes that could significantly benefit you and your career.
  • Enjoy travel and networking opportunities to the COINS 2018 Innovation Day.
  • Be a Force for Good – Undergraduate, graduate, postgraduate, young entrepreneur or already working in industry, share your ideas to help improve the construction industry and society as a whole.
  • Last year, 15 finalists represented 6 countries and a wide variety of ideas – Christine Boyle, who won the New & Emerging Technology competition & the Bouygues UK R&D Award, was one.


Open Competition Prizes

  • Business Investment
  • R & D Grants Or Paid Internships
  • Sales Meeting With Industry Leaders

Undergraduate Competition Prizes

  • Education Grants
  • Paid Internships
  • Mentoring From Academic & Industry Leaders

All reasonable traveling, accommodation and food expenses will be provided to the Grand Finalists in order for them to attend the Grand Final. All and any other expenses incurred shall not be included as part of this prize.


  • Applicants may be of any nationality and citizenship but must be fluent in English.
  • Whether you are an undergraduate, postgrad student, recent graduate, young entrepreneur or industry specialist, they want to hear from you

To be eligible for entry into the competition:

  • The applicant must present a clear case for how their idea will address one of the three challenges.
  • The applicant must speak English fluently.
  • The applicant must be 18 years of age or older on 1st September 2017.
  • The applicant must be able to attend the Grand Final on Tuesday 5th June 2018.
  • The applicant must be able to obtain legal entry to the USA for judging if selected as a finalist.
  • The idea must be able to be applied to the construction industry.
  • Applications may be prepared and submitted by a team. However, only one member of the team may present the idea at the Grand Final if the application is successful.

Judging Criteria

Challenge 1: New & Emerging Technologies

  • Idea (80%) – They want to understand:
    • The potential commercial impact (25%) – Financial impact of the use of the technology.
    • The social impact (20%) – Ability to impact millions of people.
    • The technology (10%) – Novel use of technology to solve a problem.
    • The viability of the idea (25%) – How feasible is it to implement the technology.
  • Applicant (20%) – They want to see:
    • How your background equips you to implement your idea.
    • How real is your commitment to making your idea a reality.
    • Your focus and determination to succeed.

Challenge 2: Leadership

  • Idea (40%) – They want to understand:
    • Your leadership concept (15%) – Uniqueness of ideas and or approach.
    • The potential impact of your approach (15%) – Ability to impact millions of people.
    • The viability of implementing your leadership concept (10%) – How feasible is it to implement your leadership approach.
  • Applicant (60%) – They want to see:
    • Your ability to communicate your leadership idea.
    • Your ability to demonstrate the personal qualities required to lead.
    • Your ability to inspire others to act.
    • Your focus and determination to succeed.


  • STEP 1: Create a profile. All fields are mandatory and creates an application account for you.
  • STEP 2: Select the Competition and Challenge that you wish to enter i.e. Undergraduate or Open and then within each competition the challenge that you are aiming to address being, New & Emerging Technology or Leadership.
  • STEP 3: Create your Entry.
    • For the Undergraduate Competition you will submit an 800 to 1000-word essay response to the Challenge on the form provided OR alternatively upload a 3 to 10 minute video.
    • For the Open Competition you will have to complete the online application form containing 9 questions each with an allowable number of words.
    • For both Undergraduate and Open competition entries, the entry should follow the challenge briefs and other information provided on the Challenge 1: New & Emerging Technology and Challenge 2: Leadership pages on this website.
  • Step 4: Save and Finalise your Entry. You may SAVE progress on your application at any point and return to complete it up to the closing date of the competition. Once you SAVE & FINALISE your Application Form, the application is frozen so please ensure that you have worked the idea up fully before you make the final decision to select that option.

N.B. You may find it helpful to write your entry offline, e.g., in Microsoft Word, and paste the final reviewed content into the application form.

How to Apply

  • Applicants are encouraged to register their interest in entering the competition as soon as possible. By registering their interest, Applicants will receive updates about the competition, including key dates and reminders.
  • To enter the competition, Applicants must complete the official online Application Form and clearly select the relevant competition (Undergraduate or Open) and the challenge to which the application relates. For example, Undergraduate competition and Leadership challenge.

Applications must be submitted in English using the official Application Form.

For more information, visit COINS Grand Challenge.