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Innocentive and Lumina Foundation Launch Open Innovation Partnership to Increase Postsecondary Degree Attainment in America

Waltham, Mass.—InnoCentive, Inc., the global leader in open innovation, crowdsourcing, and prize competitions, today announced collaboration with Lumina Foundation designed to uncover new ways to catalyze systemic changes in higher education. Working together, the two organizations hope to explore novel approaches so millions of Americans can access and earn high quality college degrees, certificates and credentials.

As part of this collaborative alliance, InnoCentive and Lumina have launched a dedicated Pavilion located on which serves as the premier online destination for open innovation Challenges focused on solving some of the most pressing problems affecting postsecondary attainment in America. By crowdsourcing these education problems to a global community of more than 285,000 diverse problem solvers, Lumina Foundation seeks to leverage innovative new methods and harness the world’s creative talent to achieve its goal of increasing postsecondary degree attainment in America.

“When it comes to education beyond high school, America is now being rapidly outpaced by other countries around the world,” said Jamie Merisotis, president and CEO of Lumina Foundation, the nation’s largest private foundation focused on enrolling and graduating more students from college. “Our collaboration with InnoCentive is about finding the truly innovative ideas that our country needs to create a more affordable, equitable and accountable higher education system.”

The U.S. is becoming a knowledge society, not just a knowledge economy.

Many factors are contributing to the need to increase attainment, including the increasing complexity of society, the growing role that information and information technology play in people’s lives, and the fact that people from different countries and cultures live and work together more than ever. The U.S.—like the rest of the world—is becoming a knowledge society, not just a knowledge economy.

Coinciding with the launch of the Lumina Foundation Open Innovation Pavilion, two new Challenges are now posted, each with a total award value of $10,000. As Ideation Challenges, prizes will be awarded for the best and most innovative solution submission(s) as determined by Lumina Foundation. A third Challenge, with a $100,000 award and launched late last year by Lumina, will also be posted to the new Pavilion. Although Lumina’s Challenges focus on education in America, all problem solvers from around the world are encouraged and eligible to participate and apply their unique perspective:

Challenge #1
The “Correlations to Determine the Complete Impact of Postsecondary Education” Challenge seeks proposals for novel and unexpected correlations between postsecondary education and outcomes with a clear economic impact.

Challenge #2
The “Visualizing the Impact of Significant Increases in Postsecondary Education” Challenge seeks compelling visual presentations of the impact of significantly increasing postsecondary education by taking advantage of the wealth of information and studies published in this area.

Challenge #3
The “Design of Student-centric Websites for Open-Enrollment Colleges and Institutions” Challenge seeks fully coded examples of a front-end user interface for deployment by community colleges. 
The key requirement is that the interface should be organized and presented in a way that focuses on meeting the information needs of students, particularly those who are exploring a range of avenues of study

“Our collaboration with Lumina Foundation to support its goal of increasing higher education attainment in America is perfectly aligned to InnoCentive’s mission to unleash the world’s creative capacity to solve important problems that matter to society,” said Alph Bingham, co-founder and board member of InnoCentive. “Through the new Pavilion and Challenges, we have no doubt that our creative solvers from around the world will put forth innovative solutions in pursuit of Lumina’s noble goal.”

Additional information about Lumina Foundation, the Pavilion and Challenges, as well as advice to solvers, can be found on InnoCentive’s Seeker Spotlight blog which features a new post by Lumina’s Vice President of Communications and Innovation Kiko Suarez.

About Lumina Foundation
Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation committed to increasing the proportion of Americans with degrees, certificates and other high-quality credentials to 60 percent by 2025. Lumina’s outcomes-based approach focuses on helping to design and build an equitable, accessible, responsive and accountable higher education system while fostering a national sense of urgency for action to achieve Goal 2025.

About InnoCentive
InnoCentive is the global leader in crowdsourcing innovation problems to the world’s smartest people who compete to provide ideas and solutions to important business, social, policy, scientific, and technical challenges. Our global network of millions of problem solvers, proven challenge methodology, and cloud-based technology combine to help our clients transform their economics of innovation through rapid solution delivery and the development of sustainable open innovation programs. For more than a decade, leading organizations such as AARP Foundation, Air Force Research Labs, Booz Allen Hamilton, Cleveland Clinic, Eli Lilly & Company, EMC Corporation, NASA, Nature Publishing Group, Procter & Gamble, Scientific American, Syngenta, The Economist, Thomson Reuters, and the U.S. EPA have partnered with InnoCentive to rapidly generate innovative new ideas and solve problems faster, more cost effectively, and with less risk than ever before. For more information, visit, email, or call 1-855-CROWDNOW (U.S.) or +44 (0) 207 935 0827 (International).

Media Contacts:

Lucia Anderson
Lumina Foundation

Steve Bonadio
InnoCentive, Inc.

Kiley Nichols
Schwartz MSL for InnoCentive

Lucia Anderson Weathers
Stronger Nation 2017 demonstration
Stronger Nation 2017 demonstration
June 19, 2017

A Stronger Nation 2017 report uses Census data to track progress in degree attainment at several levels – nationally, in metropolitan areas, in all 50 states, and down to the county level. It also contains national data and state-specific estimates that show attainment of high-quality postsecondary certificates.