What are the Jury’s expectations?

The jury will be looking to reward submissions that represent the best work according to the following criteria:

1. Desirable, viable and feasible design(s). These three lenses are critical in all good design and are often referred to as “the trifecta of innovation”.

  • Desirable: how can we create an experience that is truly human-centered and answers to the needs and aspirations of its intended audience?

  • Feasible: what do we need to do in order to make the project happen? What are the variables we must take into account for the project to become a reality?

  • Viable: how might you show that the solution is linked to a sustainable business model?

2. Evidence of a rigorous research process informing the design solution proposed. A well-researched submission clearly describes the problem, stakeholders, purpose and proposes a solution that is contextually grounded and well informed.

3. Innovative/novel solutions. Creativity is key. We want to see new ideas with the potential for true impact.

Who can submit?

The competition is open to students of art, design, architecture and media disciplines of universities and colleges worldwide, who are pursuing either a Bachelor level or Master level program. Students that are currently enrolled in higher education institutions or students who have graduated in 2020 and/or are graduating in 2020 are eligible to participate.

There is no limitation in the number of submissions per institution, and there is no cost to submit.

Entries must be comprised of work that is original; individuals and/or teams must hold the Intellectual Property for their submissions and have the right to enter and publish the submitted work.

Submission is online. You will be able to submit your entry here starting October 1, 2020.

What is the deadline for submissions?

Deadline for submissions is January 31st, 2021, by 23:59 UTC.

Where might submissions come from?

Submissions can consist of curricular and non-curricular projects and may include ideas developed as part of an academic assignment or course.

Submissions can also consist of a project sponsored or developed with an external partner such as a private company, NGO, non-profit organization, or community organization. Submission entries may include work conceived at a date prior to the competition launch.

Can I partake individually as well as with a team?

Students may enter as individuals or as part of a multidisciplinary team (there is no limit to the number of members in the team).

Students are invited to submit up to 1 individual project. They can also submit 1 team project for a total of 2 projects entered in the competition.

Can I engage with mentors and sponsors?

Students and teams are encouraged to seek academic and professional mentorship/advisement.

How will the winners be selected for each prize?

The international expert jury will select the winner of the Main and Safe City prizes, as well as top 50 honourable mentions.

The Founder’s Choice prize will be allocated by the Founder of BE OPEN Elena Baturina who will select the awardee out of 50 honourable mentions.

The Public Vote prize winner will be decided upon by the majority of votes in an online open vote from 50 honorary mentions.

When and how will the winners be announced publicly?

The winning submissions will be unveiled by April 2021, and an online exhibition will showcase the best projects and honorary mentions.

A live awards ceremony shall take place during the Cumulus Conference Roma 2021: Design Culture(s) at Sapienza University of Rome in June 2021.

Winners in all prize categories will be expected to attend the Rome celebrations. In addition, winners and 50 honorary mentions will be highlighted in BE OPEN, Cumulus and competition websites and publicised via the partners’ social media platforms, gaining many opportunities to see their designs showcased to a worldwide audience.