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Sabin Environmental Venture Prize

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$25,000 Cash Prize!
Stop Dreaming. Start Venturing!
Promoting Environmental Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Yale
This competition is only available for Yale students and faculty.

The Sabin Environmental Venture Prize (the “Sabin Prize”) is a new initiative created with the generous support of the Andrew Sabin Family Foundation.  It is an annual winner-take-all prize of $25,000.  It will be awarded to the best Yale student and/or faculty idea for a product, service, project or program that advances a more environmentally sustainable way of life. 

The Sabin Prize seeks to:

  1. Stimulate entrepreneurship and innovation as they apply to environmental problems;
  2. Promote multi-disciplinary approaches to environmental problem solving;
  3. Generate ideas that are scalable, achievable, quantifiable, and financeable; and
  4. Educate how entrepreneurs turn a concept into a successful reality.

Many technologies, business models and ideas can be re-purposed or applied to solving environmental problems. Applications are expected from a variety of business, technical and scientific disciplines, using for-profit, non-profit or hybrid models.  Examples of proposed ventures could include a new start-up company with a nano derived technology for desalination; a new non-profit organization that distributes existing environmental technologies to rural villages; or a new government grant or subsidy that advances solutions to an environmental problem.

There will be a Speaker Series during the 2008-2009 school year to promote the prize and spark idea generation. The topics will be environmental ventures, entrepreneurship and financing; and are intended to draw a diverse audience of students, faculty, and staff. The series will bring in Yale alumni representing a cross section of disciplines in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors.  It will also involve local partners including LaunchCapital and the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund

Joining the competition
  • Step 1: This competition is only open to current Yale students and faculty
  • Step 2: Read all the information on this page
  • Step 3: Create a user profile on Vator
  • Step 4: Create a company profile on Vator
  • Step 5: Click the "Participate in this competition" button in the top right hand corner of this page
  • Step 6: Create a letter of interest word or PDF document (following the template shown in the additional details section) and upload it to your company profile (in the playlist section on the right hand side of your company profile) by January 23th, 2009
  • Step 7: Submit your Application for the Prize by April 2nd, 2009
Key Dates
January 23, 2009 Letter of interest
February 6, 2009 Workshop
April 2, 2008 Application due date
April 17, 2008 winner announcement
  • 1-2 page Letter of Interest (LOI) by January 23, 2009 that includes the following information:  description of your idea including a brief market overview, value proposition, and environmental problem your idea is seeking to address, background information on your team, and contact information including phone, e-mail, and address.
  • For those planning to submit an application a workshop with SOM lecturer and business plan expert Maureen Burke will be held on Friday, February 6, 2009. It will cover the elements of a strong application such as: quantifying market opportunities and benefits, customer or beneficiary research, competitive analysis, assessing operations, marketing and personnel needs and preparing simple financial projections.  Your submission of the LOI will reserve your spot at this important workshop.
  • Applications for the prize which will be due on April 2, 2009.  
  • The announcement of the winner will be in April 17, 2009 at a special Awards event.

 If you have any questions relating to the Sabin Prize, please contact either Bryan Garcia () or Anastasia O’Rourke ( ).


Additional Resources


Yale Courses in Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Venture Capital

For those interested in learning more about these topics, the following is a short list of courses being offered at Yale:


MGT 618/FES 80019 Entrepreneurial Business Planning (Cromwell and Burke)
MGT 529 Global Social Entrepreneurship (Garstka)
MGT 896 Legal Aspects of Entrepreneurship (Bagley)
ENAS 323 Creativity and New Product Development (Bolanos)
MGT 946 Venture Capital and the Finance of Innovation (Metrick)
MGT 635 Venture Capital & Private Equity (Cromwell)


Related Yale Institutes & Initiatives

For those interested in accessing additional support, please visit:


Center for Business and the Environment at Yale


Joining the strengths of two preeminent professional schools, the Yale School of Management and the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, the Center for Business and the Environment at Yale supports innovative approaches to environmental problem-solving through education, advocacy, and cutting-edge research.

More information about CBEY can be found at:





See more details for the Entry Agreement.

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11 companies participated in this program