Competition Rules and Guidelines - Jamaica


In these rules, “IEEE Innovation Nation”, “IEEE IN”, “we”, “our”, and “us” refer to the competition and its organizers and “you” and “yourself” refers to an eligible entrant. By entering, you agree to be bound by these Official Rules and Regulations.


The competition will take place over three (3) months. Teams must register by the deadline to compete. The technical documentation and feasibility of the said initial submission will be judged and the top teams (10-15 teams) will be selected to participate in the competition. The selected teams will then undergo a training programming to hone their skills until the finals. The finals of the competition will be held in December where the teams pitch their refined business ideas based on the training and mentoring they have received.

The training will comprise of two main components;

  1. Startup library: A collection of topics addressing all aspects of the startup life cycle developed according to the IEEE Innovation Nation Curriculum
  2. Startup therapy sessions: Mentoring sessions with our Subject Matter Experts on topics you would like to get advice on.

At the end of the training, you will graduate as an “IEEE Innovation Nation Fellow”. A digital badge usable in your social profiles (e.g., Linkedin), a transcript and a certificate will be issued as evidence of you receiving the training.

In addition to that, CASH and PRIZES will be up for grabs as prizes for the winners of the final competition!


You are eligible to enter if you meet the following requirements at the time of entry:

  • Teams and Mentors
  • Each team may consist of minimum two (2) and maximum five (5) members in order to submit a single entry as a team.
  • The team leader must be an IEEE Jamaica Student Chapter member.
  • More than 1 team per IEEE Student Chapter may enter the competition.
  • Each competitor may only belong to one (1) team within the competition;
  • Each team is solely responsible for its own cooperation and teamwork. In no event will sponsors officiate in any dispute regarding the conduct or cooperation of any Team or its members.
  • The competition is open to university students of all ages

Innovation Nation Jamaica will schedule 2 mentoring sessions with a pool of mentors at specific dates (TBD) during the programme.    The mentoring sessions will help give constructive feedback on the product or service.  Each team is to maximize the time given during the mentoring session to ask questions and feedback from the mentors.

The competition aims to inspire innovation and to assess the creativity and knowledge of the entrants. Therefore, the mentor of your team is strictly expected to,

  • Limit his/her responsibilities as much as to providing general guidance to the team, and he/she should not be involved in the work of the team such that he/she be deemed original authorship or, may result in the claiming of rights or ownership of the submitted entries; and
  • Refrain from working on behalf of your team or any individual related to this Competition.
  • Field of Focus

The entry you submit for the competition should be based on any of the established IEEE STEM fields of study. This is referred to as the “Technological Component” in other parts of the rules submission.

The entry should be focused around one of two THEMES:

BLUE ECONOMY/Climate Change – The ‘Blue Economy’ is an emerging concept which encourages better stewardship of our ocean or ‘blue’ resources. … Similar to the ‘Green Economy’, the blue economy model aims for improvement of human wellbeing and social equity, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities.  This theme encourages a wide range of solutions designed to take advantage of opportunities in the Blue Ocean.  The Decade 2020 – 2030 had been designated “DECADE of the OCEAN” there will be many funding opportunities for Blue Economy products and services.

COVID-19/Public Health – In response to COVID-19, there came a realization that more technologies and tools need to be put in place to address a range of public health and social measures and this presents an opportunity for teams to create products and services related to the continuing public health threats including pandemics.

The content of the Entry must address at least one of the THEMES above and be related to the STEM fields and their subdivisions, including Chemistry, Computer and Information Science and Engineering, Engineering, Geosciences, Life Sciences, Material Research, Marine Biology, Mathematical Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, Psychology, Social Sciences and STEM Education and Learning research.

Rules of Submissions

To participate in the competition, Participants must submit a document outlining their idea (“Proposal”), accompanied with information about the Participant(s) and about the Proposal (all together an “Entry”) through the online submission form. Entries must comply with the following Submission Rules:

  1. Proposals must be created by and owned by the participants.
  2. Proposals shall provide an innovative and action-oriented business level idea aimed at solving a problem/need and be related to the THEME
  3. The idea/solution presented in the proposal must use a technological component to solve the said problem/need.
  4. Proposals must address the following:
    a) Provide a short executive summary of the idea;  
    b) Describe the project introduction specific to a problem statement related to one of the two themes that the proposed solution seeks to address; 
    c) Describe the solution/concept proposed to address this specific problem/need (E.g. a product, service, program, course, initiative related to STEM etc.); 
    d) Give statistics on the target market (the people who will be impacted by the solution) 
    e) Describe the process and indicators that will be used to measure its impact and success;
    f) Describe a brief commercialization plan that could make the business sustainable, it includes a brief Operational Plan; Financial Plan; & Management and Organizational Plan.
  5. Proposals will be judged based on the following Judging Criteria: 
  6. a) Clarity, scope and relevance of the problem and of proposed solution;
    b) Innovation and originality of the concept;
    c) Market analysis and Potential for impact; 
    d) Business plan including commercialization and sustainable plan. 
  7. Proposals must consist of 15 pages maximum, all inclusive – i.e. including all bodies of text, titles, headings, tables, and text boxes etc., except footnotes, endnotes, references and appendices.
  8. The following information must be provided at the top of the first page of the Proposal: the names of the Participant(s) submitting the Proposal – for teams, all team members’ names must be listed.
  9. Participants must submit their Entries by filling and Submitting the “IEEE INNOVATION NATION JAMAICA 2020 Submission Form” accessible through the IEEE Innovation Nation Jamaica webpage.
  10. Participants must ensure that their Proposal is entered through direct upload, in PDF format and must not be more than 100MB.
  11. The deadline for submitting Entries is 11:59 PM (Jamaica time), 30th October 2020 (Friday). An entry is timely and will be accepted only if received before this time. Requests for deadline extension will not be entertained under any circumstances.

A Sample Project Proposal has been separately attached to this document for your convenience and guidance. The Proposal must be presented in the manner given in the Sample Project Proposal though the participants are allowed to include additional details proven such that it does not alter the original template.

Judging Criteria

The entry will be analyzed and judged based upon the following judging criteria: (a) Clarity, scope and relevance of the problem and of proposed solution; (b) Innovation and originality of the concept; (c) Market analysis and Potential for impact; (d) Business plan including commercialization and sustainable plan.

Criteria Description
Problem Statement
  • Is there a clear problem statement?
  • Can the idea be brought to fruition as presented?
  • What is the potential of the product to help the nation in addressing societal challenges?
Innovation of Concept
  • Is the product distinctive or fundamentally different from existing approaches?
  • Will this product inspire people to support it?
  • Does the product show an outstanding innovation compared to the products in use in that area?
Market Analysis
  • Does the team possess a credible plan which clearly analyzes the competitive environment for the product?
  • Does the product substantially rely on the innovative use of technologies?
Business Plan
  • Will the product have a chance of succeeding among the approached crowds under the execution of the team’s existing plan?
  • Does the existing plan successfully remedy the commercial, technology and operations issues which need to be addressed in commercialization of your idea?
  • Does the product contain viable Operational Plan; Financial Plan; & Management and Organizational Plan?

In the event of a tie between any eligible entries, the Judging Panel shall determine, in its sole and absolute discretion, the mechanism to settle the tie. The decisions of the judges are final and binding. Note that this is an open competition that encourages innovation in any form and doesn’t preclude any approach or solution compliant with these guidelines.

Ineligibility and Disqualification of Teams

Please bear in mind that we will disqualify any incomplete or illegible entries that we receive. We will not be held responsible for any entries that we do not receive, or for entries that we receive, but are not uninterpretable for any reason.   

We will not accept any entries that may contain any inappropriate, offensive or illegal content that may jeopardize this event in any way.

You will be ineligible or disqualified if you fail to observe the established deadlines and submission criteria.

Other Information

  • You are responsible to check the website and social media pages for any amendments to this original document as we will make announcements through those platforms. Changes, if made, will be clearly visible across versions of this document.
  • If a team submits multiple entries for the same product/service, the most recent one will be used for judging.


By submitting an Entry in this competition, you retain the individual right to your work and derivative, but you grant us your royalty-free, irrevocable permission to,

  • Share Entries, documents and revised versions of documents and all other entry-related contents only with the permitted third parties including the Judges and Mentors, solely on the purpose to review, analyze, test and judge your content along the Judging Criteria mentioned and, to provide guidance and mentorship corresponding to the content of your entry; and
  • Feature entries of selected elite teams and any content related to it, in providing exposure to the participants’ work and in the promotion of the competition in any forms, including but not limited to photographs and presentations via media. We will be sending any content we plan to publish related to your entry prior to publishing. You may request changes or reject publishing of the content as you may desire.

Please note that we are not claiming any ownership of your entry, other than what was stated above and we will not be obligated to provide you with any compensation for the use of your entry beyond that has been already described.

Benefits for selected teams

  • The teams are entitled to at least thirteen workshops to further refine their ideas and take up new skills.
  • The teams are entitled to live mentoring and coaching sessions with experienced mentors.
  • The team members will graduate as an “IEEE Innovation Nation Fellow”. A digital badge usable in your social profiles (e.g., Linkedin), a transcript and a certificate will be issued as well