The Buckminster Fuller Institute is dedicated to accelerating the development and deployment of solutions which radically advance human well-being and the health of our planet’s ecosystems.

Our programs combine unique insight into global trends and local needs with a comprehensive approach to design. We encourage participants to conceive and apply transformative strategies based on a crucial synthesis of whole systems thinking, Nature’s fundamental principles, and an ethically driven worldview.

By facilitating convergence across the disciplines of art, science, design and technology, our work extends the profoundly relevant legacy of R. Buckminster Fuller. In this way, we strive to catalyze the collective intelligence required to fully address the unprecedented challenges before us.

The Buckminster Fuller Challenge

The Buckminster Fuller Challenge annually awards a prize of $100,000 to support the development and implementation of a design strategy that has significant potential to solve humanity’s most pressing problems. Recognized as Socially-Responsible Design’s Highest Award, it attracts bold, visionary, tangible initiatives focused on a well-defined need of critical importance.

Program Description

Monday, November 18

2013 Buckminster Fuller Challenge Award Ceremony
Hosted by The Cooper Union Institute for Sustainable Design

The Cooper Union – Great Hall
7 E. 7th St (btw 3rd and 4th Aves)
New York, NY 10003
7:00 to 8:30 pm

Space is limited, so please register HERE. (this link is

The Buckminster Fuller Institute (BFI) will award and celebrate the 2013 Buckminster Fuller Challenge winning entry, Ecovative, in an evening ceremony November 18th, hosted by the Cooper Union Institute for Sustainable Design.

New this year, Dan Hendrix, CEO of the Buckminster Fuller Challenge’s first corporate sponsor, Interface Inc., will also be awarding support to one of the four Challenge finalists!

The ceremony will include a Keynote talk by architect and world-renowned sustainability expert John Piccard, a video on the Challenge finalists, and remarks from this year’s winners.

Join us for this exciting opportunity to hear about leading edge design solutions from around the globe and to celebrate their incredible work.

About CUISD, our Institutional Partner

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. Lear more at CUISD. (link is


Monday, October 7

Design for 100%
Presented by The Buckminster Fuller Institute with the Design For Social Innovation program at SVA

Beatrice Theatre
333 West 23 Street
New York, NY 10011
6:00 to 7:30 pm

Space is limited, so please register HERE.


Dorothy Dunn is a recognized cultural leader and producer of exhibitions, programs, events, and products. She has worked with the Smithsonian Institution, the Philip Johnson Glass House, the Aspen Institute, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation and the Buckminster Fuller Institute, among others. Her positions have included founding Director of America: Now and Here, Director of Visitor Experience at The Philip Johnson Glass House, and Director of Education at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution. Dunn is on the Board of Openhousenewyork and Greater Hudson Heritage Network, and an advisor for the Center for Art + Environment.


Jason McLennan (Living Building Challenge)
Andrew Revkin (NY Times, Pace University)
Linda Weintraub (Eco Art Writer and Practitioner)
Woody Tasch (Slow Money)

Buckminster Fuller famously challenged the world’s artists, designers, architects, engineers to create a world that “works for 100% of humanity…”

How do we accomplish this in the face of epochal, systemic global crises like Climate Change? What are the opportunities and challenges for translating breakthrough creative vision into tangible solutions? Join members of the 2013 Buckminster Fuller Challenge Jury and previous Buckminster Fuller Challenge winners to share their insights in to these and other far-reaching questions. Trans-disciplinary collaboration, experiential learning, big data (data visualization), systems thinking, comprehensive, anticipatory design thinking will be some of the featured topics of this discussion.

About DSI, our Institutional Partner

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. Learn more at

Special Thanks

The Cooper Union