Global Social Innovation Challenge

The Center for Peace and Commerce (CPC) announces the launch of the Global Social Innovation Challenge, a student social venture pitch competition with a 7-year track record of preparing and launching social innovators in the United States and Mexico that now welcomes participation from colleges and universities worldwide.

Students start by developing a nuanced understanding of a social or environmental issue of their choice with an eye to identifying gaps in the existing approaches. Then, students identify a potential solution in the form of a social venture, and compete with other teams from their university for a chance to pitch their venture proposal at the Global Finale. Nominated finalist teams from all participating universities worldwide convene in San Diego on June 23 and 24, 2018 to compete for $50,000+ in seed funding for their venture, connections and networking.

Over the last seven years, The Challenge has brought together over 1,500 college and university students from both USA and Mexico to address world’s most pressing issues with social ventures. This year, the CPC invites universities from all over the world to join forces in equipping our students to address these pressing and chronic challenges and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

Participating universities from Australia, Canada, Ghana, Mexico, the United States and other parts of the world are joining this growing movement of universities supporting student-driven social innovation, and each university has something to add to the community. San Diego State University in San Diego, California has helped over 400 students start ventures like Recyclinator, which captures carbon dioxide for reuse. Duke University in Durham, North Carolina supports social innovators such as Suhani Jalota, who started a social venture called the Myna Mahila Foundation to reduce negative stigmas surrounding women's health. The University of Health and Allied Sciences in Volta Region, Ghana exists to educate leaders to impact health, quality of life and development in Ghana.

The Challenge is also a movement and a community. According to a team of three female engineers who were acknowledged for their work in women’s health in the 2017 Social Innovation Challenge: "We not only pitched our passion and care for women with postpartum depression but also joined together with so many other students and organizations with ideas and passion for social change. We were very inspired in such an environment and are more motivated than ever before!"

Universities are actively enrolling until October 31, 2017. To learn more about the Global Social Innovation Challenge, please visit or contact the Global Innovation Champions at