The Buckminster Fuller Institute is honored to partner with these organizations who work with us to discover the strongest design science practitioners. They provide essential support, expertise, and outreach, building a community that is working to solve some of the most entrenched global problems through whole systems approaches and integrated strategies.

By being a partner, you will help ensure that the best projects across the globe enter the Buckminster Fuller Challenge, "Socially Responsible Design's Highest Award," for a chance to win $100,000 and build awareness around their efforts to garner additional outside support for their initiatives.

If you are passionate about tackling global challenges and would like to work together, sponsor us, share our story, or get involved, please do not hesitate to contact us!

Past Sponsors

BFI is proud to partner with Interface, Inc., a worldwide leader in design, production and sales of environmentally-responsible modular carpet for the commercial, institutional, and residential markets. Founded by legendary sustainability pioneer Ray Anderson, Interface is now the world's largest carpet tile manufacturer and a leader in sustainability thinking.

The Halloran Philanthropies' mission is to inspire, catalyze and accelerate sustainable social interventions that seek to raise the level of human well-being, while respecting the cultural diversity and ecological integrity of present and future generations. Halloran Philanthropies recognizes social entrepreneurs as powerful catalysts who transform the way the world does business. They utilize their resources and network to support the advancement of social innovations and sustainable enterprises primarily in Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, India and the United States.

Programming + Events

The Cooper Union Institute for Sustainable Design seeks to provide the greater Cooper Union community—architects, engineers and artists—with the cross-disciplinary knowledge and skills that are necessary to create a sustainable society. CUISD defines a “sustainable society” as one that prospers because its economy, social practices, physical infrastructure and engineering systems all work in harmony with the ecological dynamics and resource limitations of the earth.

Catalyst Program Partners

dMASS encourages business leaders, policymakers, and citizens to face the global challenge of creating wealth at an unprecedented scale on a sustainable basis with a shrinking material resource base by shifting toward exciting technologies, business opportunities, and policies that will help us all succeed.

Katerva’s mission is to create the first truly open worldwide platform for change. Katerva is focused on inspiring action and scaling innovation - to create, find, replicate, and implement sustainability innovations to positively impact billions of people. Katerva has designed and activated four unique and powerful platforms to create and leverage these networks. Individually, these platforms are powerful tools for change. Together, they constitute an essential meta-network capable of creating a better tomorrow.

The Technology Exchange Lab (TEL) is dedicated to bringing communities out of poverty by driving the adoption of innovative, cost-effective and sustainable solutions that improve the lives at the bottom of the pyramid. TEL hosts a crowdsourced database of over 600 innovations in order to connect practical solutions to the people who need them most. Through its Project Accelerator service, TEL helps NGOs and communities leverage appropriate technology solutions to maximize the impact of last-mile development.

Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of the world's leading provider of news and information, is committed to empowering people in need around the world with trusted information and free legal assistance. Buckminster Fuller Institute is an official referral partner of TrustLaw Connect, an innovative programme of the Foundation that links social enterprises and NGOs with top law firms from around the world offering their legal assistance pro bono. As such, all semi-finalists, finalists, and winners of the Buckminster Fuller Challenge are eligible for fast-track access to TrustLaw Connect in order to access free legal assistance around the world.

Unreasonable Institute gets world-changing entrepreneurs what they need to scale their impact. Each year, they unite 10-30 entrepreneurs to live under the same roof for six weeks in Boulder, Colorado. These entrepreneurs receive training from 50 world-class mentors, forming relationships with 25 investment funds, receive legal advice & design consulting, and pitch to hundreds of potential investors at the end of the Institute.

Outreach Partners

ArchiDATUM as a company aims at creating awareness about Architecture in Africa. They aim at partnering with all the stakeholders in the building industry towards a common goal of objectively informing the public and the world at large about Architecture in Africa. Their vision is to inform the world about Architecture in its context and contribution to its society.

The Biomimicry Global Design Challenge is an annual team competition that focuses on addressing critical sustainability issues with nature-inspired solutions. The Challenge is hosted by the Biomimicry Institute, in partnership with the Ray C. Anderson Foundation.

Bioneers is a non-profit educational organization that highlights breakthrough solutions for restoring people and planet. Since 1990, Bioneers has acted as a fertile hub of social and scientific innovators with nature-inspired approaches for the world’s most pressing environmental and social challenges. We connect people with solutions and each other.

Design for Social Innovation at the School of Visual Arts is the first MFA program for leaders who will use the power of design to solve human and business problems. Through experience-based learning, students from diverse backgrounds are immersed in the context, tools and skills of design for social innovation, fostering transformation at a systems level to create a resilient future for organizations and communities.

We believe design has a major role in shaping lives. Culturally, ecologically and contextually responsive solutions are powerful tools towards safeguarding futures and preserving currently threatened realities. This notion drives our international events. Competitions have many virtues; they encourage innovation and foster talent, but most importantly they raise awareness on global issues whilst suggesting possible actions. Exhibitions and publications complement this, helping reinforce concepts, encourage discussion and educate. This is what we aim at doing through our events: an arena for ideas to grow into possibilities.

Ethical Markets Media (USA and Brazil) is a micro-multinational social enterprise with the mission of reforming markets and metrics while helping accelerate and track the transition to the green economy worldwide with the Green Transition Scoreboard®, Principles of Ethical Biomimicry Finance™, Transforming Finance TV Series and research and daily news.

Ethical Team drives positive change through media outreach, capacity building, advocacy, creative communications, strategic counsel, partnership building and sustainable business intelligence. We help companies and organisations communicate their authentic brand story whilst championing social equity and environmental balance.

Good Company Ventures offers a bold new approach to business that's about anchoring global impact with real traction; about scaling this impact by refining transformative business models; about launching dreamers by giving them the tools to do.

The Impact Design Hub is an online resource for architects, designers, makers, and others committed to designing a better world. As the next incarnation of, the Impact Design Hub aims to bring together those working in public interest, social impact, humanitarian, and community design, and provide a platform for sharing and communication in order to collectively help grow and mature this field.

The International Living Future Institute is a hub for visionary programs. They administer the Living Building Challenge, the built environment's most rigorous and ambitious performance standard. They are the parent organization for Cascadia Green Building Council, a chapter of both the United States and Canada Green Building Councils that serves Alaska, British Columbia, Washington and Oregon. They are also home to Ecotone Publishing, a unique publishing house dedicated to telling the story of the green building movement's pioneering thinkers and practitioners.

Architecture that Reacts. An international architectural competition, seeking innovative new architectural ideas that are socially engaged and are capable of reacting to unpredictable conditions and environmental, natural, and social risks - providing both safety and freedom for their occupants. Laka Architektura is a public arts initiative that gathers architects, artists, designers, engineers and scientists in order to start an international panel for sharing innovative ideas about the objectives of architecture.

PCDN is the go-tohub for the global social change community connecting over 35,000 individuals/organizations engaged in social change, peacebuilding, social entrepreneurship, development and related fields. We provide a one-stop shop to inspire, connect, inform and provide the tools and resources to scale social change. Since our launch we have had over 5,000,000 visitors and 20,000,000 page views and helped thousands of individuals and organizations worldwide network, obtain funding, jobs, and be inspired.

SOCAP is the largest interdisciplinary gathering of people working at the intersection of money and meaning. Investors, social entrepreneurs, social ventures, government leaders, academics and other innovators worldwide come to SOCAP conferences to collaborate and evolve a market that moves money towards impact.

Storefront for Art and Architecture is a nonprofit organization committed to the advancement of innovative positions in architecture, art and design. The organization's program of exhibitions, events, projects, competitions and publications are intended to generate critical dialogue and collaboration across geographic, ideological and disciplinary boundaries. As a public forum for emerging voices, Storefront explores vital issues in art and architecture with the intent of increasing awareness of and interest in contemporary design.