The James Dyson Award 2017 is open for entries
The James Dyson Award 2017 is open for entries

The James Dyson Award is open for entries and a prize equivalent £30,000 towards the winning project’s future development is up for grabs.

“There is normally a better solution to a problem. Engineers challenge convention and have brilliant ideas; The James Dyson Award looks for remarkable yet simple designs with the potential to have a huge impact on society. Each year I am amazed by the ideas and I look forward to seeing this year’s raft of entries” said Dyson.

Last year’s New Zealand winner was NERVE a concussion- detecting mouth guard with motion sensors worn by rugby players to identify concussion risks after the player has taken a rough knock. Designed by Spencer Buchanan, a 22-year- old Massey University industrial design graduate, NERVE utilises inertial motion sensors to identify forces transmitted to the head but missed by the human eye. If an athlete wearing the mouth guard takes an impact over a certain threshold, the sensors communicate wirelessly to the team doctor’s iPad or tablet, and calculates the risk based on an algorithm that measures the impact and where it was located and the player’s previous concussion history to determine whether the player should return to play.  

Last year’s International winner was a foldable bike helmet which uses a unique honeycomb paper configuration to protect the head from impact; folds flat when not in use and is made from 100% recyclable materials.


The contest is open to university level students (and recent graduates) studying product design, industrial design and engineering.

A national winner is selected for every country the award runs in, before going through to the final phase where the international winner is chosen by James Dyson. 

What is the prize?

International Winner:

  • The international prize is £30,000* (or equivalent to approximately NZ$53,000) for the student and £5,000 for the student’s university department.

Up to two International Runners-up:

  • £5000 (NZD equivalent) each

National Winners

  • £2000 (NZD equivalent) each
  • What is the competition timeline?
  • Opens: 30 March 2017
  • Close: 20 July 2017
  • National winners and finalists announced: 7 September 2017
  • Dyson engineers’ shortlist: 28 September 2017
  • International winner and finalists announced: 26 October 2017

Who can enter the James Dyson Award?

 Any university level student of product design, industrial design or engineering, or graduate within four years of graduation, who is studying or studied in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Ireland, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, Spain, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, the UK and the USA. 

 For more information and regular updates on the progress of the James Dyson Award, follow the James Dyson Foundation on Facebook and Twitter