Net Zero Challenge logo

Open Knowledge Foundation is excited to launch the Net Zero Challenge, a global pitch competition about using open data for climate action. 

With a new administration in the USA and the COP26 meeting in the UK, 2021 will be a crucial year for the global climate response.

Let’s see how open data can play its part. 

Tell us how your idea or project uses open data for climate action – and you could win a $1,000USD in the first round of the Net Zero Challenge. 

Full details about the Net Zero Challenge are available at

This project is funded by our partners at Microsoft and the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office. We are extremely grateful for their support. 

How are you advancing climate action using open data?

To be eligible for the Net Zero Challenge, your idea or project must do one or more of the following:

  1. Understand climate risks
  2. Track climate progress
  3. Enable informed climate action, or
  4. Evaluate climate impact.

Some ways in which you might do this include:

  • Making climate relevant data easier to discover, view and understand by the general data user
  • Creating a useful passthrough tool or API for climate-relevant data in any country or jurisdiction
  • Organising climate data so that potential data users (including those who are less data-literate) can see what’s available, and make use of it

We are very open minded about your approach and methodology. What we care about is the outcome, and whether you answer the question.

You might consider whether your idea or project is:

  • Technically achievable
  • ​Easy to use
  • Easily integrated or can be provided as a tool
  • Scalable
  • Good value for money
  • Published under an open licence which allows free use by others 
  • Explainable (this is the key test of the Challenge. Can you pitch your project in three minutes to a general audience?) 

How do I apply?

Apply now by filling out this form. All applications must be received by 6pm Pacific Standard Time on Friday 12th March 2021. Late submissions will not be accepted. 

Applications will be reviewed and a short list invited to pitch their idea to a panel of experts at a virtual pitch contest.  

Pitches will take the form of a public three-minute presentation via video conference, followed by a question and answer session with our panel of climate data experts. ​

Pitches can be live, or prerecorded but the Q&A will be live. 

Expert guidance for the Net Zero Challenge is provided by our advisory committee: the Open Data Charter, the Innovation and Open Data Team at Transport for New South Wales and the Open Data Day team at Open Knowledge Foundation. 

Need more information?

If you have any questions about the Net Zero Challenge, please check out the FAQs on the website. To contact the Net Zero Challenge team directly, email