As the world's most experienced and advanced open innovation provider, we've been managing, motivating and interfacing with technical communities to participate in innovation challenges for years. We define a NineSigma Grand Challenge as a broad engagement with both our Solution Provider and Solution Seeker communities to identify breakthrough transformative technology development opportunities. A Grand Challenge has a compelling prize strategy and integrated PR and marketing and is a powerful tool for raising broad awareness among multiple audiences. Check out some recent Grand Challenges for a more detailed view.



Nike Ease Challenge:

Sponsored by Nike

Status: Winner Announced

The Nike Ease Challenge focuses on designing a new, innovative footwear solution that provides a more hands-free design and helps athletes of all abilities to more easily put on, secure and take off their shoes.  




Unmanned Xtreme Heat Inspection Challenge:

Sponsored by AES

Status: Submissions Under Evaluation

AES is searching for innovative unmanned technologies to solve $1 billion global electricity industry issue. Solutions will enable inspections in extreme heat conditions, keeping people safer and improving energy availability by getting power plants back online more quickly.

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NASA Space Robotics Challenge:

Prizes by NASA Centennial Challenges; Conducted by Space Center Houston; Sponsored by NineSigma

Status: Top 20 Finalists Announced

The Space Robotics Challenge focuses on developing software to increase the autonomy of dexterous mobile robots in humanoid format so they can complete specific tasks on Earth, during space travel, or after landing on other planets (such as Mars).  




Essilor See Change Challenge:

Sponsored by Essilor

Status: Finalists Announced

Poor vision is the most common disability in the world, yet its impact on society is largely unrecognized.  As the world leader in ophthalmic optics, Essilor’s mission is to improve lives by improving sight. Through the See Change Challenge, Essilor seeks proposals for low-cost, mobile, easy to learn, easy-to-use and scalable solutions that enable measurement of eye refractive errors.






GE HealthyCities Leadership Challenge:

Sponsored by GE

Status: Winners Announced

GE invites local community based coalitions, which include a corporate partner, to submit proposals describing a community health improvement plan focused on their U.S.A. based community.  




CCEMC Grand Challenge:

Sponsored by CCEMC

Status: Round Two Submissions Under Evaluation

The CCEMC Grand Challenge is a CAD $35 million challenge designed to identify breakthrough technologies that will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions by transforming carbon from a liability into an asset.




Essential Molecules Challenge:

Sponsored by Air Liquide

Status: Winners Announced

The Essential Molecules Challenge seeks new solutions for high value molecules such as O2, N2, H2, and CO2.  




The Innovative Sand & Water Technologies for Onshore Operations Challenge:

Sponsored by GE and Statoil

Status: Topic I Winners Announced; Topic II Winners Announced

GE and Statoil are seeking to improve the use of materials in onshore oil & gas production - reducing trucking in local communities and making energy production more efficient. Our mission is to accelerate the development of more environmentally and economically sustainable energy solutions. Join GE and Statoil in Powering Collaboration!



The BASF Energy Contest:

Sponsored by BASF

Status: Winners Announced

BASF seeks to identify and develop technologies that will provide efficient, low cost, grid-scale energy storage solutions. Help us shape the future of energy storage.


The Cisco Security Grand Challenge:

Sponsored by Cisco

Status: Winners Announced

The Cisco Security Grand Challenge is a global initiative set to deliver intelligent cybersecurity solutions for the real world, addressing threats before, during, and after a cyber attack. Areas of focus include malware defense, security credential management, and privacy protection.




Interested in sponsoring your own Grand Challenge?

Please contact Denys Resnick, Chief Growth Officer at or download NineSigma's Grand Challenge whitepaper.


If you are looking to answer questions about an existing Grand Challenge, please refer to our Community Help for community information or the Grand Challenge specific forums for technical questions.