Idea Challenge

Up for a challenge? Fancy meeting new people? Then join us for an afternoon of brainstorming, problem-solving fun. You might win a prize too!

Put your skills to the test

What is an Idea Challenge?

An idea challenge is a focused form of innovation that encourages creative solutions to a particular problem or area of improvement. Your mission is to use your business skills, creativity and critical thinking to solve a challenge set by us. You’ll be assigned to a team and by the end of the afternoon, you’ll present a short video pitch and show us how you’d solve the challenge. It’s the perfect way to get to know your fellow E-Lab students, apply your own creativity to solutions, and see first-hand how innovation and entrepreneurship work together.

And as an extra incentive, we’ll be awarding prizes for the best idea and best pitch!

Past event

Past event

Example challenge


Delivered in partnership with the Data Science Institute and facilitated by Guessworks.

17th May Idea Challenge Theme:
Technology for Good
Develop Creative Solutions for the Negative Effects of Digital, Data and AI

This was an evening workshop exploring the dark side of digital, data and AI. Working in teams, participants used their creativity and critical thinking to identify problems and create solutions that solve some of the negative consequences of digital, data and AI.

We heard from Professor Mark Kennedy the Director of the Data Science Institute at Imperial, and Enterprise Lab startup founders who helped to contextualise the challenge. Hattie Willis, former Associate Principal of Rainmaking Venture Studio, founder of GuessWorks, an experienced facilitator, guided participants through the process of generating, choosing and finally pitching their ideas. And as an extra incentive, cash prizes were awarded for the best idea and best pitch.

This event appealed to those who are:

  • Passionate about exploring and solving the negative consequences of digital, data, and AI
  • Interested in innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Looking for a team to work with
  • Keen to learn about the ideation process and develop new skills
    (Please note: no pre-requisite technical skills were required)

This Idea Challenge forms part of the 0-X contest: a cutting-edge design competition organised by Imperial College’s Data Science Institute in collaboration with the Dyson School of Engineering, Imperial I-X and the Business School. 0-X is a contest to inspire technology for good: it aims to ‘zero-out’ the negative side effects of the modern digital and data world by finding creative solutions to the most pressing, unanticipated problems in tech.

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Join our community, meet co-founders and grow your entrepreneurial network!

Our monthly social bringing together students and postdocs from every corner of Imperial College London.

Stay productive and focused while working on your business idea. Make the E-Lab your office and creative space.

Use your creativity and critical thinking to solve a challenge set by us. Win prizes for the best idea and best pitch!


Speak to someone about your idea and learn the skills you need to test it in the real world


Fast-track your idea on one of our cohort-based entrepreneurship programmes

Imperial’s flagship entrepreneurship programme for students and postdocs with an annual prize fund of £100K.

The UK’s leading university programme championing women-led startup teams with an annual £30K prize fund.

A 12 week programme for students looking to give their business idea a big developmental push over the summer months.

More available programmes


Get expert support and advice to turn your idea into a successful commercial venture


We’re passionate about inspiring the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs


Got a question, need some advice or just need directions to the best basement on campus? Get in touch!

Find us

Imperial College London
Level 0, Sherfield Building
(Access next to Great Hall)
South Kensington Campus
Exhibition Road
London SW7 2AZ