The prizes that bind us

I’ve just spent 3 inspiring days with 1,800 “Anthropists” at Anthropy23.

In the beautiful former mineworkings of the Eden Project it is easy to feel that any transformation is possible. But in conditions of exponential change and complexity, our traditional linear approaches to change often fall short.

One of the most effective ways to achieve change in conditions of uncertainty is by creating prizes and challenges.

Many Happy Returns

I’m  inspired by the example of the XPRIZE Foundation which reports that for every $1 of prizes that they offer, $33 of investment is made by third parties in addressing the challenges that they promote. And as exponential change challenges every aspect of our lives, XPRIZE are seeing exponential growth in their prize funds, now exceeding $300m in total.

Earthshots and Moonshots

Prince William meanwhile has activated armies of innovators in support of his Earthshot Prize, bringing focus and clarity in complex conditions and delivering transformational capabilities and change as a result.

Poundshop Prince William

Using prizes and challenges need not be the exclusive preserve of Princes and Billionaires though – all of us, Anthropists, executives, academics, public sector works and volunteers can use prizes and challenges to provide the clarifying, activating and convening power to bring our allies together to address what matters to us most.

Small organisations and even individuals can make effective use of prizes and challenges – the size of the prize is much less important than issuing a clear and simple way for people to be involved. You don’t need to ask for advanced technical applications – and you can use playful winner-selection techniques to maintain motivation and engagement across a wide demographic range.

Activate Allies

Creating a prize or challenge programme is quick and cost-effective. It expands your reach by engaging fresh audiences with a playful and simple invitation. It helps you identify and build new alliances and partnerships, and it brings you new insights into what is possible. As your “prize directed” network grows, you find new ways to achieve your objective.

At Amitypath we are working with 3 leading private and third sector organisations to deliver prizes and challenges that are accelerating their progress and activating their allies. 

If you would like to harness the power of this increasingly effective model, we look forward to talking with you!

Roof of the Eden Project
The network that holds up the roof of the Eden Project biome