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This year’s Provost’s Innovation Challenge has concluded! Congratulations to all our participants!

Clothing production is the third biggest manufacturing industry, and contributes to more climate change than international aviation and shipping combined. More than $500bn of value is lost annually due to underutilisation of clothing and lack of recycling. 8% of global carbon emissions is caused by the fashion industry, with nearly 70 million barrels of oil used each year to make the world’s polyester fibre. Fast Fashion is a major problem facing society today, with emerging markets bearing the brunt of the human cost. If you would like to join us in combatting this problem, you can sign up to take part in our hackathon.

We know how important global and societal issues are to our students. At Tangent, Trinity’s Ideas Workspace, we are committed to empowering Trinity students to make a real impact on society and the world. The Provost’s Innovation Challenge @ Tangent is a social good hackathon that provides supports, creative outlets, mentorship, and the chance to have a real impact on a global problem.

Last year, the Challenge was Sustainable Cities, with winning team ReFunk developing a platform and process to reduce the land waste and carbon footprint by facilitating reuse and upcycling of furniture. The four founders went on to win a place on LaunchBox, Tangent’s Student Accelerator, where they placed second overall. They are currently working away on their startup, which is now revenue generating only one year later.

Previous Provost’s Challenges have tackled over-use of Single Use Plastics, with Rezero, a deposit-return scheme for restaurants and eateries, winning the day. In the first year of the Provost’s Innovation Challenge, students tackled the problem of homelessness in Ireland, with Aquahomes, a social enterprise that upcycles disused rescue boats into affordable houseboats, among the teams to emerge from the Challenge.


Find out more about the Provost’s Innovation Challenge - Watch now

Frequently Asked Questions

What does the Provost’s Innovation Challenge @ Tangent entail?

It’s a hackathon, which means you’ll think creatively and critically about a global problem. You’ll brainstorm ideas, along with other passionate individuals, that could positively impact on the problem. This year’s Provost’s Innovation Challenge will take place from 12-14 November 2021.

You can sign up to take part in the Challenge here

Who is eligible to get involved?

We are asking teams of current Trinity students (UG and PG) to work on finding solutions to Fast Fashion.

How do I sign up?

You can sign up HERE

What’s the problem we’ll be working to solve?

The 2021 topic for the Provost’s Challenge is Fast Fashion.

Am I expected to solve the whole problem?

The example we always use is this: Say the problem everyone votes for is Healthcare Inefficiencies. Solutions posed could range from a better appointment booking system for hospital appointments, to an app that allows doctors to check on their patients without requiring a visit or an appointment. So the problem is big, but the solution(s) can be small (but mighty).

What's the prize?

On the final day of the hackathon, the winning team(s) will be picked by a panel of judges. (Pitch practice sessions and advice will be offered!) The winning team will receive a cash prize (Amount TBD). For any further questions, contact

I’m a Trinity alum and/or member of staff and I want to get involved.

Great! You can help mentor and guide a team by getting in touch with to volunteer.

I have an idea for a solution that I want to work on – can I do that?

Yes. First thing to do is sign up for the Challenge. You can then submit your idea HERE to be worked on by a team of Challengers once voting has closed and we have our topic. All Challengers will be given the opportunity to join your solution team and work together over the weekend.

I don’t have any ideas for solutions – is that a problem?

You have more ideas than you’d think, but don’t worry – you don’t need to know what your solution will be right now. Once you sign up to the Challenge, you will be emailed in advance of the hackathon to sign up to work on a solution if you don't have one of your own you want to work on. Sign up here.

I am part of a team already – can we work together?

Yes – when you submit your idea for a solution you can list your team mates. But first you must all sign up to participate as Challengers. Sign up here.

What dates do I need to be free for to take part?

Friday 12 November (from 6pm on) – Sunday 14 November 2021. More details are here

I still have questions?

Get in touch with us by emailing Alison at