- Why should I enter the James Dyson Award?
Lots of reasons. The chance to win nationally or internationally – and the prestige. The James Dyson Award celebrates and publicises the work of young designers on a global platform. You will also have a project page on the James Dyson Foundation’s website – a place to direct family, friends, professors, and even investors and prospective employers.
- Who can enter the James Dyson Award?
Entrants must be, or have been within the last four years, enrolled for at least one semester in an undergraduate or graduate engineering or design program at a university in a country chosen to participate in the James Dyson Award. In the case of team entries, at least one team member must meet the above criteria and register as the team leader. All other members of the team must be, or have been within the last four years, enrolled for at least one semester in an undergraduate or graduate program at a university in a country chosen to participate in the James Dyson Award.
All entrants are required to provide documentation of their student or alumni status. Acceptable documentation includes: transcript, signed and dated letter from a professor or tutor, or a degree certificate. You will be required to provide this documentation during the registration process and can upload a PDF, JPEG or MS Word document.
- Can I enter as part of a team?
Yes, team projects are judged exactly the same as individual projects. Should a team win, the prize money will be split equally between the team members.
- Can I enter more than one project?
You can enter as many projects as you want. The winning project is based solely on the merit of the design.
- I'm French, but studied and developed my project at a university in Singapore. Which country should I use for my entry?
Singapore. The James Dyson Award celebrates young designers – it also rewards universities who have invested in you to help you get where you are. The university of the International Winner is awarded £5,000. So it’s important to enter the Award based on where you attended university.
- I'm a mature student. Can I enter the James Dyson Award?
Yes, any designer or student who meets the above criteria can enter the Award.
- My design is in the manufacturing stage or has been commercialised. Can I enter?
Yes, we encourage you to enter your design, even if it’s at the latter stage of the design process or is already on the market.
- I studied jewellery / graphic / fashion / textile / etc. design. Can I enter?
Sorry, the Award is only open to students studying (or who have studied within 4 years) product design, industrial design, or engineering. You may be able to enter as a team, provided at least one team member is studying, or has studied within the last 4 years, product design, industrial design, or engineering at a university in a participating region.
- What do I have to submit to enter the James Dyson Award?
You will need to create a profile on the website and include a copy of your student or alumni status documentation. Once you create a profile you can upload a project. You can view this sample project as a guide. To upload a project you will need to provide:
- Description of your design – the inspiration behind it, the development process you undertook, and the overall function of the design. You will need to provide the descriptions in English and your native language (if different to English).
- Images portraying the development of your design – early sketches, CAD renderings, initial prototypes, and the finished product on a white background. Each image should be at least 1MB but no more than 3MB.
- A video is strongly recommended, but not essential. The video should be less than 3 minutes and show both the development process of the design and your prototype in action. You will need to upload the video to YouTube or Vimeo first.
- Surely I can't compete against the rest of the world? I've got no chance of winning!
Everyone has an equal chance of winning the James Dyson Award – it is awarded to the student with the best design. Each design is judged on its own merit, rather than its origin or designer. The entry process is simple and you could win at the national or international level. And even if you don’t win anything, there’s still a good chance that your design will receive some great exposure through the international media and design community.
- I haven't made a prototype for my design - can I still enter?
Yes, you can enter. We understand that it’s unfeasible for some designers to prototype at university level. While a prototype is not required, it is a great communication tool to explain your design in images and video. It gives the judges a better idea of how (and if) it works.
- I want to keep my design a secret. Can I still enter the Award?
Unfortunately the structure of the James Dyson Award means it is not possible for your design to be kept secret. The Award celebrates and raises awareness for young designers and we can’t do this without your designs and stories. Your entry will be published on the James Dyson Award website and may be used for publicity purposes. It is your responsibility to seek advice and protection from your local patent or intellectual property office before submitting your entry.
- What are you looking for in a good entry?
We’re looking for designs that demonstrate a significant and practical purpose, offering real benefits to the end user. Ideas should also be viable – both technically and commercially. The design should include clever yet simple engineering principles that help the design work. Prototypes – working or even initial crude models – help demonstrate the idea and function of the design. Ideally, the design should also have sustainability in mind. You can view some of the past winners in the Project Gallery.
- How are the designs judged?
Entries will be reviewed through a number of stages. The first round of judging takes place at the regional level. A local panel of design and engineering professionals review all of the entries in their region to choose one national winner and four national finalists. National finalists from each region then move on to the second stage of judging. At this stage a panel of Dyson design engineers review all of the finalists and select the Top 20 projects to move on to the final stage. Finally, James Dyson reviews the Top 20 designs and picks the International Winner and up to two International Runners-Up.
- How many winners will there be and what are the prizes?
- £30,000 to the student or student team
- £5,000 to the student(s)’ university department
- James Dyson Award certificate
Up to two International Runners-Up:
- £5,000 to the student or student team
- James Dyson Award certificate
National Winner (one from each region):
- £2,000 to the student or student team
- James Dyson Award certificate
National Finalists (up to four from each region):
- James Dyson Award certificate
- Will there be a ceremony to present the Award?
Due to the international nature of the James Dyson Award there is no award ceremony. However, we will announce the winner of the James Dyson Award to the international press and this often includes on air media opportunities for the winner.
- Where does the £5,000 prize go to within my university?
The prize money is offered to the design or engineering department through which you are eligible to enter the Award. The prize will not be given to individuals. It will be donated to the department to further educational opportunities in design and engineering.
- Will I get a job at Dyson if I win?
The James Dyson Award is funded by the James Dyson Foundation – a charity. The intention is to encourage more young people to study and pursue design engineering, not to recruit talent for Dyson the company. The James Dyson Award does, however, raise the profile of young design engineers and there are a number of past entrants who have subsequently applied for jobs at Dyson and still work there today. We encourage you to apply for Dyson by visiting www.careers.dyson.com.
- What countries are participating in the James Dyson Award?
Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, UK, and US.
- Why is my country not participating in the James Dyson Award?
The James Dyson Award is running in the countries where we have suitable means to support it. We hope to add more countries in the future. If we do add countries we will include them in the Terms and Conditions. You can also signup to our newsletter for updates on the Award.
- Will I be expected to participate in publicity?
Yes. By agreeing to the Terms and Conditions of the Award you are accepting that your story, project details, images and footage can be used for publicity purposes. You may also be invited to take part in publicity opportunities in person or by phone or email. These requests will be handled by the James Dyson Foundation and your personal details will not be shared directly with journalists unless you have granted permission to do so. You have the right to decline any opportunity which you do not wish to be involved with directly, whether in person or via phone or email. However, the James Dyson Foundation may still use your story, project details, images and footage for media opportunities which will result in exposure for the Foundation, you and your design.
- What is the James Dyson Foundation?
The James Dyson Foundation is an international charity dedicated to encouraging more young people to become design engineers. We do a lot of work outside of the James Dyson Award, including providing resources to help teachers bring engineering to life in the classroom. You can learn more about the work we do in the About Us section of the James Dyson Foundation website.
- What is the relationship between the James Dyson Award and Dyson?
The James Dyson Award is administered and run by the James Dyson Foundation, an international charity dedicated to encouraging young people to realize their engineering potential. There is a clear distinction between the goals of the James Dyson Foundation, a philanthropic entity, and Dyson the commercial business. But there is also a relationship because the James Dyson Foundation is funded by Dyson profits – it benefits from having James Dyson acting as the chair of the Board of Trustees and it is able to tap into resources that Dyson can offer. For example, Dyson engineers volunteer their time to assist with the educational work of the James Dyson Foundation, including judging and selecting the Top 20 James Dyson Award entries each year.
- Will Dyson profit from my idea?
No, as stated in the Terms and Conditions, you will retain the rights to any intellectual property surrounding your idea. The aim of the James Dyson Award is to give young designers the helping hand they need to showcase their ideas on a global stage and get exposure which will enable them to make contacts and push their work forward. Dyson will not take your idea.
- Can the James Dyson Foundation visit my university?
Each year the James Dyson Foundation organizes a number of design engineering lectures and workshops in schools and universities around the world. We typically plan these events up to a year in advance. We’d love to do more but we’re quite a lean team. However, we’re happy to consider your request if you contact us. You might also find some of the resources and tools on our website helpful.