Competition details

The CircularCityChallenge is a Pan-European contest for ideas on circular interventions in students’ local environments. This challenge empowers young people to make the world a better place by proposing innovative and sustainable solutions that support a circular way of living.
Key dates

Submission is open from 1st of September 2023 until 31st of July 2024

Announcement of the winners: 31. August 2024 

Who can participate?

The contest is open to all pupils and students between the ages of 14 and 19 across Europe. They are encouraged to participate as a team with fellow students (maximum team size: 3 students), but can also submit individually, without a team. Team members may be of various age, and cross-class collaboration is welcomed.

The evaluation of the submissions will be held in three categories to account for different levels of education and guidance:

  1. Open submissions I: submissions by university students between the ages of 18 and 19
  2. Open submissions II: submissions by school pupils between the ages of 14 and 17
  3. Guided submissions: submissions by workshop participants in the municipalities Logroño, Trofaiach and Bistrița.
What to submit?

Two files are required to submit the “intervention” on the online platform:

  1. FILE 1: Explanation of the “intervention” and reflection on its possible future impact. Tell a story about how the idea shifted the system toward making cities more sustainable, more liveable, more inclusive, and more future-proof. Format: A video, presentation (pdf/pptx), comic, text document or similar.
  3. Your “interventions” can be either an Action or a Plan:
  5. Action (real-world project): For instance, building a prototype, performing a campaign, programming an app, changing a product cycle, conducting an event and many more possibilities.
  7. Plan (proposal for action): For instance, designing a product, sketching an alternative production process, planning a political measure, formulating a law, and many more options.
  9. FILE 2: A journal of the process and experiences when developing the “intervention”. Tell us how you identified the problem, who you contacted, whom you asked for help, and what you learned personally or as a group about circularity, collaboration, and the needs of other people involved in circularity issues. For this purpose, you can use the logbook or create a video, photo, text journal, or similar. Through these submission formats, we would like to understand your idea and its potential benefits as well as to learn from your team experience. We don’t expect professional videos or sophisticated texts but are interested in your ideas!

Please submit the ideas in English language. If this is not possible, please use AI translator tools to translate your submission, and submit both versions.

  1. Feel free to experiment – the creativity and possible impact of your idea is more important to us than the professionality of the submission.
What are the prizes?

Awards for all participants:

  1. All participants will receive feedback and a Certificate for Circularity Education!
  2. Submissions and teams’ interviews videos will be featured on the CCC platform.
  3. Access to expert workshops about circular economy and career options in circular economy with a certificate of participation.
  4. Membership in our “Circularity Heroes” online community, where participants can present themselves and connect to likeminded peers to jointly act for change. CCC will connect the communities to prominent circularity channels and raise the visibility of Circularity Heroes.
  5. Networking opportunities with international jury members & prominent actors in circular economy.

Awards for guided submissions:

Winners of the guided submissions will be invited to an award ceremony in their municipality. At the award ceremony, the submissions will be exhibited and presented. Jury members from city government, local teachers and local media representatives will evaluate the submissions and choose the winners. All winners will receive prizes!

What are the evaluation criteria? 

1. UNDERSTANDING URBAN CIRCULARITY: How well does the team display a basic understanding of circularity and the circular economy within complex urban systems of production and consumption?

2. UNDERSTANDING INTER-CONNECTIVITY: How well does the team understand of general landscape (key actors, organizations, initiatives), determine who needs to be involved, map the relationships, roles and information flow in the system, identify opportunities to build new relationships, and explore other parts of the system?

3. SEEING OPPORTUNITIES FOR CIRCULARITY: How well does the team represent the problem in their environment and address this problem, establish objectives through cooperation, and find ways to achieve those objectives via circular actions?

4. CONVINCING THE JURY ABOUT THEIR ANALYSIS AND PROPOSAL: How well does the team present their overall analysis, which includes the problem, actors, cooperation, and their final proposal for the problem they defined?

What does the evaluation process look like?

Round 1: All submissions are going to be rated by the CCC Jury and will receive feedback. The Jury will consist of 5-10 experts from different fields and EU member states. Each jury member has to evaluate contributions by using a rating matrix: For each of the four evaluation criteria (see above) the jury members allocate 0 to 5 points. The teams with the highest scores will be invited as finalists to present their projects at the award event. The number of finalists depends on the total number of contributions

Round 2: Based on the finalists’ presentation the jury will select winners. The number of winners depends on the total number of contributions (TBA).

Guided submissions by the workshop participants in the municipalities Logroño, Trofaiach and Bistrița will be evaluated by local juries.