Launched in 2007, the Fuller Challenge has defined an emerging field of practice: the whole systems approach to understanding and intervening in complex and interrelated crises for wide-scale social and environmental impact. The entry criteria have established a new framework through which to identify and measure effective, enduring solutions to global sustainability’s most entrenched challenges. The rigorous selection process has set a unique standard, gaining renown as "Socially-Responsible Design's Highest Award."

The Fuller Challenge attracts bold, visionary, tangible initiatives focused on a well-defined need of critical importance. Winning solutions are regionally specific yet globally applicable and present a truly comprehensive, anticipatory, integrated approach to solving the world's complex problems.

"We are coming to an era the likes of which we've never seen before, we're in the whitewaters of human history. We don't know what lies ahead. Bucky Fuller's ideas on design are at the core of any set of solutions that will take us to calmer waters.”

– David Orr

2015 Challenge Winner Awarded at Inspiring Celebration!

On November 19th, 2015, BFI hosted the 2015 Fuller Challenge Conferring Ceremony at the Wythe Hotel. The evening was generously supported by the Cooper Union Institute for Sustainable Design, Whirlwind Creative, and Brooklyn Brewery. Click for details and photos.

2015 Fuller Challenge Video Released Online

The 2015 Fuller Challenge Video, generously produced by Whirlwind Creative, is now online! Watch to learn more about BFI's flagship program and this year's Finalists and Winners.

GreenWave Wins The 2015 Fuller Challenge

Congratulations to the Winner of the 2015 Fuller Challenge, GreenWave, a non-profit organization that has designed the world’s first multi-species 3D ocean farms. GreenWave aims to restore ocean ecosystems and create jobs in coastal communities by transforming fishers into restorative ocean farmers. Click to read more!

About the Challenge

Each year, The Buckminster Fuller Institute invites scientists, students, designers, architects, activists, entrepreneurs, artists and planners from all over the world to submit their innovative solutions to some of humanity’s most pressing problems. A $100,000 prize is awarded to support the development and implementation of one outstanding strategy.


The 2015 Fuller Challenge application window is now closed. Sign up for BFI's newsletter, Trimtab, for updates, or follow us on Facebook—and save the date for the 2015 Conferring Ceremony on November 19th in New York City!


See here for a catalog of Challenge-related Announcements, Press Releases and news coverage.


Fuller Challenge winners apply a rare combination of pragmatic, visionary, comprehensive and anticipatory thinking and tackle issues as broad as urban mobility, coastal restoration and innovation in biomaterials packaging.

Idea Index

For more information about the winners, finalists, and other entrants to the Buckminster Fuller Challenge, from 2008 to 2013, please visit Idea Index 1.0. Version 2.0 is on the way!