WRI Ross Prize for Cities

Through our work with partners around the world, we’ve learned that sometimes urban projects add up to more than the sum of their parts. These rare, transformative projects create a ripple effect, igniting citywide change. With the generous support of visionary business leader and philanthropist Stephen M. Ross, WRI Ross Center is announcing a global competition to identify, celebrate and replicate these initiatives. The WRI Ross Prize for Cities will award $250,000 to a project that has contributed substantially to transformative change toward more sustainable cities but has yet to achieve the recognition it deserves.

 

 


Sparking Transformative Change

Transformative initiatives positively impact the economy, the environment and the community in ways that are unprecedented or unexpected. They open our eyes to new possibilities by overcoming bottlenecks, leveraging investments or taking unique approaches to solving well-known problems. They impress hope and excitement on the people they affect. And their impact extends beyond a single block or street, catalyzing positive change across a neighborhood or city. Representative transformative projects include:

 

One of the most extensive bicycle networks in the world has not only reduced pollution and congestion, but changed the transportation habits of millions.

A neglected and unused elevated train track has been transformed into a vibrant linear public green space that is spurring excitement around the world.

The connection of hillside barrios to the city center has cut travel times in half and triggered social interventions for some of the poorest communities in the city.

The dismantling of a major downtown freeway created a green corridor that has increased flood protection, transit ridership, land values and employment.

A plague outbreak prompted the city to reform its health system and transform the city, improving waste management, public health monitoring and flood risk management.

Value for Applicants

A cash prize of $250,000 will be awarded to the winning team.

Media recognition and publicity for five finalists and the winner:

  • WRI Ross Center will build a media campaign highlighting the achievements of the top applicant projects.
  • Finalists will receive in-kind support to create compelling communications materials that document the project.

Invitation and expenses-paid trip to a high-profile gala dinner in New York in April 2019.

Contribution to global collective knowledge about transformative change in cities. The project’s story will contribute to ongoing research and learning about urban transformation.

 

Timeline

Jury

completes

final

reviews

Five

finalists

announced

Winner

announced

Applications

open

Applications

close

February

2018

june

2018

october

2018

march

2019

april

2019

Jury

completes

final

reviews

Five

finalists

announced

Winner

announced

Applications

open

Applications

close

February

2018

june

2018

october

2018

march

2019

april

2019

Applications

open

February

2018

june

2018

Applications

close

Five

finalists

announced

october

2018

Jury

completes

final

reviews

march

2019

Winner

announced

april

2019

 

Questions? Contact us at ross.prize@wri.org

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