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What is Scaling Up?

Since 2006, over 250 student teams have received recognition for their “Big Idea” in UC Berkeley’s Bears Breaking Boundaries and Big Ideas contests.  For the 2013-2014 contest, awards are available for student-led initiatives that have previously won a Big Ideas or Bears Breaking Boundaries contest, who have since generated excellent results and are in need of additional support 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.  In other words, the purpose of the Scaling Up Award is meant to fund a new component of your original project.

Category Specific Rules

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

  • UC Berkeley
  • UC Davis
  • UC Irvine
  • UC Los Angeles
  • UC Merced
  • UC Riverside
  • UC San Diego
  • UC San Francisco
  • UC Santa Barbara
  • UC Santa Cruz

“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

Category Specific Resources

Berkeley Skydeck

The Hub Bay Area


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The Blum Center links world-class faculty, inspiring new curriculum, and innovative technologies, services and business models to create real-world solutions for developing economies.