The 2018 Bay Area Global Health Innovation Challenge

The 2018 Bay Area Global Health Innovation Challenge


Your global health innovation, or “product”, should be a low-cost, high-impact solution to a global health challenge in a low or middle-income country. The innovation can be a product, a service, a systems-level improvement, or a novel application of an existing tool. Winning ideas are those that are easily implemented and scalable, that also possess tremendous potential for a broad impact on human health and wellbeing. Submissions will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Innovation: What is the innovation and what does it aim to achieve?
  • Impact: Who will benefit from your innovation and what is the expected health impact/outcome?
  • Accountability: How will you evaluate the impact of your idea and what data or metrics will be used to do so?
  • Feasibility: What will it take to get your idea off the ground?
  • Sustainability: Is your idea sustainable over the long-term? Will it work in the field, and is it welcomed by the populations it seeks to impact?
  • Affordability & Investment Potential: How much funding will be required? How will you utilize the $10,000 prize?
  • Interdisciplinary: Do you have the appropriate skill-set to make your innovation a reality? If not, where will you find this expertise?

The Prize

  • The winning team will receive the $10,000 HealthRoots grand prize in seed funding that must be used to invest in their innovation. A commitment to six-month and one-year progress reports will be required.
  • The winning team will also be offered mentorship from a group of global health advisors in the academic, business, and nonprofit communities.
  • All semi-finalist teams will have the opportunity to receive feedback and potential mentorship from an influential panel of leading global health professionals and venture capitalists (the judges).

2018 Challenge Details & Timeline

  • Online submissions open: January 23
  • Online submissions close: February 7, 2018 extended to February 16
  • Finalist announcement: late March 2018
  • Challenge competition: May 4-5, 2018 in San Francisco

Challenge Terms & Conditions (participants must agree to these before submitting their entries)

  • The team must be comprised of currently-enrolled university students. Students from all disciplines and stages of training are welcome, including undergraduate, graduate (ANY degree), resident (i.e. medical training), and postdoctoral students. Individuals holding faculty appointments are NOT eligible for competition.
  • There is no limit to team size, although please note that if your team is selected to participate in the final competition weekend, these presentations will be restricted to no more than three individuals per team.
  • The “innovation” must be student-driven and led. Although we encourage students to draw on faculty and other outside mentorship or support, it must not be the work or research output of a faculty member.


The toolkit is a collection of documents, videos and external links to provide you some guidance before submitting your entry.





<div class="froala-output"><p>Frequently Asked Questions, and answers, for the 2018 Bay Area Global Health Innovation Challenge</p></div>