Award Cycle

The Innovations Awards cycle consists of three rounds of review. Beginning in 2017, the Innovations Awards will be offered every year.

In the first round of competition, experts—both practitioners and scholars—screen all submitted applications. From this pool, 5 finalist programs will be selected to advance in the competition and will receive press coverage along with any other programs selected for honorable mention by our evaluators.

In the second round, Innovations Award evaluators will visit each of the finalist programs to conduct a two-day assessment. At the same time, Innovations staff will also conduct additional research on each of the finalist programs. Following the completion of a successful site visit, each of the finalist programs will be officially named an Innovations Award finalist.

During the third and final round of competition, representatives from the selected finalist programs will be invited to the Harvard Kennedy School campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to participate in a two-day convening of experts and practitioners working on issues of economic mobility to discuss the state of the art in this area represented by the finalist programs. During this conference, finalists will also be asked to present their innovations before the members of the Innovations National Selection Committee, who will then select the winner of the Award. The winner is eligible to receive a grant of $50,000 and to have a case study about their program created by the Harvard Kennedy School, and each finalist is eligible to receive a $10,000 grant upon successful completion of a project proposal.

The winner of the Innovations Award will be announced following the presentations before the National Selection Committee.