You must be logged in to create new topics.
Product Innovation Challenge Q & A
My name is Holly, and I am a Built Environment Specialist with the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute. I am very excited about the Product Innovation Challenge, and I will be posting questions and answers about the Challenge and the application process here as I receive them. Please feel free to post your own questions here as well! I will monitor this page and am happy to answer your questions and address any concerns.Replies
Q: Do manufacturers need to pursue Cradle to Cradle certification for products entered in the Challenge?
A: No. The products are only required to meet the basic standards.Holly Kuestner posted on February 16, 2013
Q: Who are the judges for the Challenge?
A: There are eight judges:
Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute
Tom Darden III
Make It Right Foundation
Senior Vice President LEED
Director of Real Estate and Workplace Services
Executive Director and LEED AP
First Community Housing
Consulting Co-Director, Green Screen & Applied Science
Clean Production Action
Dr. Coert Zachariasse
Delta Development Group
Architect and Founder
GIGAHolly Kuestner posted on February 16, 2013
Q: In what stage of development does the product need to be?
A: It needs to be producible. This does not necessarily mean it is produced yet (though it certainly can be), but there must be a clear path to production. Design concepts are not eligible.Holly Kuestner posted on February 17, 2013
Q: Are products eligible for the Challenge if they are already Cradle to Cradle certified?
A: No.Holly Kuestner posted on February 21, 2013
Q: Is it okay to submit additional supporting materials with an application?
A: Yes, there is space for this in the application, though the size is limited to 10 MB.Holly Kuestner posted on February 25, 2013
Q: Does the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute plan to distribute the winning products?
A: No. We are interested in promoting the winning products through media coverage, but we do not want to distribute the products themselves. For example, we would like to feature the video submitted by the winner and potentially use the write-up content for promotional purposes.Holly Kuestner posted on March 7, 2013
Q: Do I need to participate in an informational webinar to enter the Innovation Challenge?
A: No, the webinars are completely optional. They are intended to explain the application process in a different format than the written rules (for those who prefer an audio/visual presentation).Holly Kuestner posted on March 7, 2013
Q: Are detachable items, such as furniture, eligible for the Challenge?
A: Yes!Holly Kuestner posted on March 10, 2013
Q: In Article 7, it sounds like the Challenge sponsors will gain rights to my product. Is this correct?
A: No! The challenge sponsors gain rights to use your “Submission,” which is your application materials. The rights and licenses referred to in Article 7 pertain to these application materials, not the product itself. This is so we can promote the products entered in the Challenge.Holly Kuestner posted on March 10, 2013
Q: Are home designs eligible?
A: Unfortunately, no. The focus of the contest is on products and materials for affordable housing. A home design would be out of the scope of the Challenge.Holly Kuestner posted on March 19, 2013
Q: The Challenge is focused on identifying greener products for affordable homes. Can you clarify what is considered affordable?
A: Yes! We are looking for products that could contribute to houses that could be constructed for $100,000 – $150,000. We know that this is a challenge, and we hope the $250,000 in prizes will help provide incentives for manufacturers to create or bring to market products that everyone can use.Holly Kuestner posted on March 19, 2013
Q: Can one company or individual enter multiple products in the Challenge?
A: Yes! Please submit a separate application for each product.
Q: My company has a collection of similar products. Can we submit the collection?
A: If you are submitting a collection, you’ll need to include the Bill of Materials for each variation in the collection and if the collection is manufactured in separate facilities, you’ll need to include data on all facilities involved in the collection.
Q: Are there any restrictions on who within a company can register for the Challenge? For example, does it need to be the General Manager?
A: No! The person who registers will be the contact person for the application, but he or she can have any role within a company.
Q: Are you looking for “high-tech” solutions or will you consider “low-tech” materials?
A: Both! We are looking for all types of products that will contribute to healthier, more sustainable, affordable homes.
Q: How “sustainable” does the production process need to be to enter a product in the Challenge?
A: Cradle to Cradle is a continuous improvement program. The program recognizes that companies are at different places on the five attributes and encourages them to set goals to optimize in all five areas. To be eligible for the Challenge, the product just needs to be able to qualify for the Basic level of certification, so it is not expected that all processes will be optimized.
Q: Does the product have to be something used in the construction of an affordable home or is it purely a product that the affordable housing demographic can afford?
A: The Challenge is specifically focused on materials for affordable housing—from construction to interior finishes and furnishings.Holly Kuestner posted on March 30, 2013
Q: Are there any chemical ingredients that disqualify a product?
A: Yes. Chemicals on our Banned Lists are not allowed. You can find the lists here: http://c2ccertified.org/images/uploads/C2CCertified_Banned_Lists_V3_121113.pdfHolly Kuestner posted on April 6, 2013
Q: Can manufacturers outside the United States enter the Challenge?
A: Yes! We currently have participants registered from more than ten countries.Holly Kuestner posted on May 5, 2013
Q: What is expected for the video portion of the submission? Why do you request a video?
A: Please create a video or slideshow that does not exceed 3 minutes in length. If you choose to make a slideshow, the number of slides is flexible, but you should narrate the presentation and ensure it stays within the time limit. Videos and slideshows should be posted on YouTube per the application instructions.
Videos and slideshows will be used by the judges, and all of the finalists will be posted online for others to learn about the products and stories.Holly Kuestner posted on May 6, 2013
Q: How should I address the affordability component in my application?
A: Great question! Affordability is an important criterion for the judges. In the application guidance document, we state, “Provide an Indication of affordability. How does this product price in comparison to similar solutions in the marketplace?” Affordability considerations include first costs, labor, maintenance, efficiencies (reduced energy or water use, etc.). A description that touches on these elements would be helpful. For example, a partial description might read, “The first costs of the product are 10% higher than alternative options, but installation requires no heavy equipment and less labor and therefore, the total cost should be equivalent to 20% less than the current technology” (whatever the case may be). We do not expect you to conduct a formal competitive analysis.Holly Kuestner posted on May 6, 2013