How to enter
TAKE YOUR FIRST STEP
The James Dyson Award supports budding design engineers at the start of their careers. If you’re a current student or recent graduate with an idea that solves a problem, we want to hear about it. We’ll be equally impressed by rough-and-ready prototypes as we will by mass market-ready samples. Don't worry, the entry process is simple.
Who can enter?
The James Dyson Award is open to current university students of engineering, product design and industrial design – and those who have graduated in these subjects in the last four years. We'll ask to see official documentation that proves it.
If you don't want to work alone, or if you studied something else but have a brilliant idea you want to share, you can still enter as part of a team. Your team leader must have studied one of the qualifying subjects, and all team members must be (or have been within the last four years) enrolled for at least one semester in an undergraduate or graduate programme.
We are also open to those completing degree-level apprenticeships, or those who have completed one in the past four years, in the field of engineering or design.
Participating countries and regions
Invention knows no limits
All entrants must have undertaken their studies in one of the following countries or regions:
Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Mainland China, France, Germany, Hong Kong SAR, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States.
HOW JUDGING WORKS
A panel of local design and engineering professionals will select three entries from your country or region to progress to the next stage. One of these will be declared the National Winner, earning a cash prize.
Projects are judged on the strength of the entry, not just the invention itself. You’ll need to communicate the significance of your invention, but also how the product was developed and how you reached your final design. Demonstrating an iterative, trial-and-error approach will serve you well.
At this point, a panel of Dyson engineers pour over entries chosen by the national judges, whittling them down to just 20. They look at how well each entry answers the brief, keeping commercial viability in focus – is your product something that people will want, and you can manufacture at a reasonable price?
The final 20 entries are reviewed in detail by James Dyson himself. Selecting his favourites, they are then scrutinised by Dyson’s intellectual property team for any legal infringements (e.g. on third party patents).
Armed with this information, James hand-selects the international winner, two runners-up and the sustainability winner.
Whether or not you are chosen as the winner, we respect your intellectual property. Dyson will not steal or profit from your idea, full stop.
Frequently asked questions
NATURALLY, YOU HAVE QUESTIONS
The best design engineers always do. So we've pulled together the most common on our FAQs page.
Structuring your entry
WHAT WE NEED TO SEE
To enter, you'll first need to register and upload proof that you're a student or recent graduate in one of the qualifying subjects.
Once registered, you'll need to complete our online form. We'd like you to tell us:
- What your invention does
- Where you got your inspiration
- How it works
- How you developed your design
- What sets it apart
- What the future holds for it
This information is what we'll present, word for word, in our Project Gallery. It is also what judges will see when discussing your entry. So treat it as seriously as you would a university assignment. As with any essay, you should make a plan, get feedback from others, and proofread it before submitting.
You must submit the entry in English. If you wish, you can also submit a copy in one of several other languages.
You can upload up to five images, of up to 3MB each, to support your entry, including one feature image. You might want to share early sketches, CAD renderings and initial prototypes, plus an image of the finished product (if you have one).
Make them high quality, and have a look at past entries for inspiration on how to frame your idea. Your feature image will be the one which appears in our project gallery and must be a minimum of 1440px x 810px. Ideally this image should show your final product design.
Some award entrants include a video. These often help to explain an idea or project, but you won't be marked down if you don't have one. Videos should be less than 3 minutes long and show both the development process of the design and your prototype in action. You'll need to upload your video to YouTube or Vimeo first.
Take a look at our gallery of past winners for examples of successful entries.
IP and Copyright
Know your rights
Your entry will be made public
The James Dyson 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 your story, project details, images and footage may be used for publicity purposes. It's your responsibility to seek advice and protection from your local patent or intellectual property office before submitting your entry.
Your work is your own
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, gain exposure, make contacts and push their work forward. Dyson will not steal your idea.