SOURCE: InnoCentive

May 20, 2008 10:51 ET

Foundation Issues Challenge on InnoCentive for Radically Improved and Energy-Efficient Air Conditioning

Prize to Be Given for Best Design of More Efficient Cooling Unit

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - May 20, 2008) - The Barr Foundation, a private family foundation committed to enhancing the quality of life for all of Boston's citizens, and InnoCentive Inc., the leader in Prize-Based Open Innovation sourcing, today announced the launch of The Boston Innovation Challenge. This is a Barr Foundation initiative in collaboration with the Cambridge Energy Alliance, a public-private collaborative formed to reduce energy usage in the City of Cambridge, Massachusetts, within five years. The Challenge offers a prize of $30,000 for the design of a radically energy-efficient method of cooling and dehumidifying residential and small commercial spaces.

The Boston Innovation Challenge for Energy-efficient Air Conditioning is hosted and managed by InnoCentive, the global innovation marketplace, as part of the recently established Clean Tech and Renewable Energy Pavilion, also supported by the Barr Foundation.

The Barr Foundation is sponsoring the challenge to encourage innovations that make a difference locally, but that will also have an impact worldwide. This Challenge is focused on discovering radically improved efficiencies in residential and small commercial space cooling and dehumidification methods, in order to reduce summer peak electric loans and overall energy consumption. The Challenge asks Solvers to submit method design proposals applicable to existing building stock in urban environments located in humid environments. Upon the conclusion of this Challenge, a second phase may include an invitation to a select group of Solvers to build prototypes of their designs.

Roberto Cremonini, Chief Knowledge & Learning Officer of the Barr Foundation, said of this initiative: "The Barr Foundation has always seen knowledge and networks as key resources in realizing its mission to make Boston a better city for all. The creation of the Boston Innovation Challenge for Energy-efficient Air Conditioning is in keeping with this approach to philanthropy by soliciting solutions from InnoCentive's global network of innovators. The power of their collective knowledge, creativity and innovation unleashed through this process could have a global impact and reap big rewards for society."

In 2007 more than $3B was committed to clean technology companies by venture capitalists, a 100% increase from 2006. To address this growth and the critical need for innovative products and services that will have a positive impact on the Earth's environment, InnoCentive has launched the Clean Tech and Renewable Energy Pavilion to introduce their community of more than 140,000 Solvers to eco-friendly Challenges. Visionary organizations like the Barr Foundation work with the Clean Tech and Renewable Energy Pavilion to harness the passion, creativity and knowledge held within to accelerate R&D, provide cutting edge eco-products and ultimately improve humankind.

Dwayne Spradlin, CEO InnoCentive, said: "Clean technology has emerged from just a prominent buzzword to an industrious and critical sector. The products and services in development today hinge on the mission that we can decrease our global footprint and in some cases perhaps reverse the damage already done. Organizations like the Barr Foundation should be commended for their efforts supporting the development of eco-friendly products and we are excited that they will be tapping the collective wisdom of InnoCentive Solvers to more effectively and quickly solve their Boston Innovation Challenge through our Clean Technology and Renewable Energy Pavilion."

InnoCentive and the Barr Foundation welcome all Solvers to visit the Clean Tech and Renewable Energy Pavilion and register to participate in this Challenge (go to The challenge period runs through July 14. A panel of experts from around the U.S. has been recruited to judge the submissions.

About the Barr Foundation

The Barr Foundation is a private foundation committed to enhancing the quality of life for all of Boston's citizens. The Foundation's primary areas of emphasis are education and the environment, with additional support for arts and cultural activities.

About InnoCentive

Founded in 2001, InnoCentive built the first global web community for open innovation, enabling creative problem solvers, including scientists, engineers, business professionals and entrepreneurs, to collaborate to deliver breakthrough solutions for R&D-driven organizations. InnoCentive Seekers, who collectively spend billions of dollars on R&D, submit Challenges to the InnoCentive Marketplace where more than 140,000 engineers, scientists, inventors, business people, and research organizations in more than 175 countries are invited to solve them. Solvers who deliver the most innovative solutions receive financial awards ranging up to US$1,000,000. InnoCentive's Seekers include commercial, government and non-profit organizations such as Eli Lilly and Company, Janssen, Solvay, GlobalGiving and The Rockefeller Foundation.

For more information on InnoCentive, go to:

InnoCentive and InnoCentive Challenge are registered trademarks of InnoCentive, Inc. Other product or service names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

Contact Information

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