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What is “Scaling Up Big Ideas”?

Since 2006, over 250 student teams have received recognition for their “Big Idea” in UC Berkeley’s Bears Breaking Boundaries and Big Ideas contests. After implementing their projects and gathering feedback on their project ideas, winning teams often are ready to scale their projects to additional communities, develop solutions to related problems, or otherwise scale their projects.

The Challenge

The challenge for this category is for previous Big Ideas or Bears Breaking Boundaries award winners to (1) demonstrate that they have generated excellent results in implementing their original winning project idea, and (2) describe plans to “scale up” their project. For the purposes of this category, “scaling up” is defined as outreaching to a new geographic area or underserved population, or adding additional services to an ongoing project serving the same geographic area described in your original winning proposal.


The “Scaling Up” category is open to all matriculated undergraduate and graduate students who previously won a Big Ideas or Bears Breaking Boundaries award but have not previously won a “Scaling Up” award.

“Scaling Up” pre-proposals should primarily describe the team’s proposed new project component or initiative using the framework outlined in the Contest Application Requirements. However, “Scaling Up” applicants should also briefly state the name of their original project, state the year that the project initially won a Big Ideas or Bears Breaking Boundaries award, describe the original project ideas, and explain the progress made to date on the original project.

For additional information about general contest rules, timing, and how to apply, please refer to the Contest Application Requirements.

Past Winners


Nuestra Agua

Back to the Roots

More Winners


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