HUD Sustainable Housing Competition

Sustainable Urban Housing: Collaborating for Liveable and Inclusive Cities
Ashoka's Changemakers, with the support of the Rockefeller Foundation, and in partnership with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Department of State, and the American Planning Association (APA), are launching an online competition to find the best solutions to integrate and develop affordable, inclusive and sustainable urban housing. Successful solutions will engage communities, entrepreneurs, and key institutions in collaboration, while simultaneously respecting the environment, local cultures and practices.
The Sustainable Urban Housing: Collaborating for Liveable and Inclusive Cities competition is being launched in anticipation of the 2012 Summit of the Americas, and in support of U.S. President Barack Obama's Energy and Climate Partnership for the Americas (ECPA). It is funded by the Rockefeller Foundation.
"By the middle of this century, more than three quarters of the world's population will live in cities, which means global poverty will have an urban face," said Rockefeller Foundation Associate Director Benjamin de la Pena. "We must encourage entrepreneurial solutions and innovations in policy to rapidly scale sustainable and inclusive urban housing, and need solutions that are co-created with both the urban poor and historically marginalized populations."
The competition seeks innovative products, policies, and strategies that mobilize community resources and the ingenuity of designers, planners, environmentalists, developers, bankers, engineers, and civic and government leaders. The competition winners will build affordable, liveable, inclusive communities by connecting a broad network of entrepreneurial problem solvers and strengthening citizen engagement that directly involves communities.

"This competition will solicit the most promising solutions that engage local residents, leading innovators, and policy makers," said HUD Deputy Secretary Ron Sims. "Under President Obama's leadership, the U.S. has unveiled a new urban and metropolitan agenda that promotes integrated approaches to creating more inclusive, sustainable, and prosperous outcomes in our urban centers, our metropolitan areas, and the rural areas beyond them. This competition will further foster the sharing across international borders of the best ideas to build economic and social progress."
This competition focuses on Latin America and the Caribbean, but welcomes all solutions for creating sustainable urban housing in any city around the world. It is open to all individuals, teams, and organizations (charitable organizations, private companies, or public entities).
"Urbanization presents a huge challenge, particularly in Latin America, that will be intensified by other trends such as climate change," said U.S. State Department Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs Maria Otero. "This competition provides a unique opportunity for policy makers to connect and collaborate with global innovators in finding solutions to pressing geopolitical issues."
You can nominate or submit a solution for sustainable urban housing from November 5 through February 2, 2011. The top three entries submitted by 5pm EST, February 2, 2011 will each win US $10,000.>
The most competitive entrants will be invited to an event that closes the competition in June 2011 at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. Innovators and their models will introduced to both public and private partners, including prospective funders.
APA is launching an urban planning focused ECPA initiative with "Sustainable Urban Planning and Energy Efficient Construction in Low Income Areas of the Americas" - a kick-off event in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on November 4 - 5, 2010. The event draws a diverse set of actors from the Americas to begin forming local, national, and transnational partnerships and networks for enhancing the understanding and use of new technologies and planning tools as ways to mitigate and adapt to climate change while building energy-efficient communities of lasting value. The deliberate mix of participants from government, planning practitioners, non-governmental organizations, academics/institutes, and foundations is aimed at forming and sustaining long-time professional partnerships that will result in technical and educational exchanges and capacity building for urban officials.
"This is a unique opportunity to share planning best practices across the Americas. We look forward to both learning and assisting in building planning capacity and encouraging citizen engagement," said APA CEO W. Paul Farmer, FAICP. "This competition enriches the planning process with novel ideas that will spark collaborations between policy makers and entrepreneurs, creating smarter, more effective and sustainable policy frameworks."
For news and information on the competition visit
You can download the competition entry form from the link at the end of this page.

About Ashoka's Changemakers
Ashoka's Changemakers is a community of action that connects social entrepreneurs around the globe to share ideas, inspire, and mentor each other. Through its online collaborative competitions and open-source process, is one of the world's most robust spaces for launching, discussing, and funding ideas to solve the world's most pressing social problems. Changemakers builds on Ashoka's three decade history and belief that we all have the ability to be a Changemaker.
About the Rockefeller Foundation
The Rockefeller Foundation fosters innovative solutions to many of the world's most pressing challenges, affirming its mission, since 1913, to "promote the well-being" of humanity. Today, the Foundation works to ensure that more people can tap into the benefits of globalization while strengthening resilience to its risks. Foundation initiatives include efforts to mobilize an agricultural revolution in Sub-Saharan Africa, bolster economic security for American workers, inform equitable, sustainable transportation policies in the United States, ensure access to affordable and high-quality health systems in developing countries, accelerate the impact investing industry's evolution, and develop strategies and services that help vulnerable communities cope with the impacts of climate change. For more information, please visit
About the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)'s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable housing. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business.
About the American Planning Association
The American Planning Association is an independent, not-for-profit educational organization that provides leadership in the development of vital communities. APA and its professional institute, the American Institute of Certified Planners, are dedicated to advancing the art, science and profession of good planning -- physical, economic and social -- so as to create communities that offer better choices for where and how people work and live. Members of APA help create communities of lasting value and encourage civic leaders, business interests and citizens to play a meaningful role in creating communities that enrich people's lives. APA has offices in Washington, D.C., and Chicago, IL.
About the U.S. Department of State
The U.S. Department of State, headed by Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton, carries out U.S. President Barack Obama's foreign policies for the American people. The Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs is headed by Assistant Secretary of State Arturo A. Valenzuela, who is responsible for managing and promoting U.S. interests in the region by supporting democracy, trade, and sustainable economic development, and fostering cooperation on issues such as citizen safety, strengthening democratic institutions and the rule of law, economic and social inclusion, energy, and climate change.
More about the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA)
U.S. President Barack Obama invited all countries of the region to join the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) at the Fifth Summit of the Americas in April 2009. Joining ECPA is voluntary, allowing governments, Inter-American organizations, private industry, and civil society to lead or participate in initiatives focused on energy efficiency, renewable energy, cleaner fossil fuels, infrastructure, energy poverty, sustainable forests and land use, and adaptation. ECPA is intended to help foster welcoming government policy environments that encourage low carbon development, as well as act as a tool to identify areas where assistance is needed. Any government in the hemisphere can lead an initiative, as well as offer its own financial support to implement activities or seek financing from public and private institutions and multilateral development banks. Progress and information is shared on the Organization of American States' ECPA clearinghouse at .

Download Competition Entry Form Here (MS Word Format)268 KB
Download and Print Colour Brochure (PDF format)740.75 KB