Ashoka Changemakers and HSBC are inviting applications for the Future Skills Innovation Challenge 2020 in the USA for creative, passionate innovators who are building a future where everyone has the skills needed to thrive.

Ashoka Changemakers and HSBC recognize the power of social entrepreneurs to help develop the skills needed to plan for a successful future, both financially and through meaningful employment.

They will be interested in:

Within the topic of Financial Capability, innovations such as:

  • Digital solutions which empower people with the knowledge and skills to manage their money effectively.
  • Innovations that change people’s behaviours and enable them to be financially healthy.

Within the topic of Employability, innovations such as:

  • Entrepreneurs who focus on developing innovative, high-quality future skills training that will skill, reskill and upskill people.
  • Ideas that help people foster the mindset of continuous learning – especially in industries that are most vulnerable to the effects of automation.

Worth of Award

There will be 12 challenges winners, across 3 categories:

Most scalable solutions:

  • Awarded to solutions with proven models who have the potential to begin scaling their impact.
  • Winners receive and up to $25k cash prize plus support & mentoring from HSBC and Ashoka on how to scale and raise additional finance.

Most innovative solutions:

  • Awarded to solutions with innovative use of technology.
  • Winners receive up to $20k cash prize plus support & mentoring to help develop their innovation.

Best early-stage ideas:

  • Awarded to solutions with highly innovative ideas which are still at an early stage.
  • Winners receive up to $12.5k cash prize plus support & mentoring to develop their idea.


To apply for Future Skills Innovation Challenge 2020:

  • You must have incorporated as a non-profit, for-profit, or hybrid organization.
  • You must be over 18 by the time you apply.
  • If your product has not launched, you must have a business plan and MVP (prototype, pilot, or another proof of concept).
  • Entries will only be accepted in English (winners will be expected to engage in activities that require English proficiency).
  • Entries are open for the following markets: Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Canada, Chile, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Oman, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, UAE, UK (inc Channel Islands), USA, Vietnam.

How to Apply

  • click “ADD YOUR IDEA” in the link below to kickstart your changemaker journey and apply.
  • After submitting, you may view other entries, revise your entry, and re-submit it until the deadline on midnight (UK time) on Friday 28th February.
  • If you have any questions regarding the Challenge please contact our team of Network Managers for your specific region:Southeast Asia – Richard – [email protected]

    South Asia, Middle East & Africa – Supriya – [email protected]

    Europe – Esther- [email protected]

    Latin America – Nicolas – [email protected]

    North America & Oceania – Benfang – [email protected]

Deadline: Entries for Future Skills Innovation Challenge 2020 close on February 28, 2020

Click here for more details and to apply

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