Health x Design: Building Health into Everyday Life Design Challenge

Funding Agency:
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Mad*Pow and Health 2.0 Advocates have launched a design challenge, sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. We ask the health and design community to envision solutions that reshape everyday life to be healthier by default. 

The focus of this design challenge is to imagine how, in the near future, we might use technology to make health an integral part of our daily routines.

Many attempts to encourage healthy lifestyles rely on prompting people to make healthy decisions in the moment, while doing nothing to address the underlying infrastructure, norms, and culture that guide our behavior. For example, a FitBit might prompt us to take more steps, but it doesn’t touch the transportation infrastructure that makes commuting by car the default choice.

Our environment has made it hard to be healthy, and our health care system can’t keep up. The United States spends far more on health care than any country in the world and yet, in terms of health outcomes, we achieve dismal results. We seek solutions that improve health, not just by focusing on health care and medicine, but also by taking a new look at the fundamentals of our everyday lives.

How might we design the systems we use every day to yield health instead of sickness? Building health into our everyday lives means using design and technology to reshape how we eat, sleep, move from place to place, socialize, and entertain ourselves so that everyone can lead healthier lives by default.

Our panel of judges will choose two winning solutions: one design that targets specific healthy behaviors and one design that envisions broad, systemic change.

Deadline: August 31, 2019

Agency Website

Amount Description

There are two different prizes available for this challenge:

  • Winners will receive $5,000 in cash prizes:

    • $5,000 – Prize 1: Address a target behavior at the systems level
    • $5,000 – Prize 2: Reimagine a system or space
    • Honorable Mentions: Entries that do not win but demonstrate a compelling concept or solution may receive an honorable mention.

Funding Type



Grad/Prof Students


Arts & Humanities
Medical - Basic Science
Medical - Clinical Science
Medical - Translational
Social Sciences

External Deadline

August 31, 2019