FAQ

Does my idea belong in this competition?

All ideas that advance clean technologies and/or services are encouraged to apply. Applications that focus on advancing technologies which address the EERE’s mission are given special consideration. For more information, please see the list of last year’s teams or contact us.

Do we need to have progressed to a specific stage in order to be considered?

Teams will be considered at all stages of development, including as early as ideation or conceptual phase. See the eligibility page for limitations on funding already received.

How much travel is required?

Travel to workshops held in Berkeley, California is highly encouraged, but not required. Remote participation and/or workshop recaps can be made available given enough advanced notice. However, the final pitch competition requires all team members to be physically present at UC Berkeley.

Is travel to the competition reimbursed?

There is no travel reimbursement for the competition, however, many universities offer travel reimbursement to students competing in programs such as the Berkeley Cleantech University Prize. Please check with your institution for reimbursement opportunities. If no reimbursement are available, and travel expenses are a barrier to participation, please reach out to us at info@beci.berkeley.edu, and we will try to assist you.

Is the Berkeley CUP only for Berkeley students?

No. Any team in which at least 50% of the formal team members are students actively enrolled in a accredited U.S. university or college can apply. See the eligibility requirements here.

Do I need to legally form a company before I apply?

No. If you are selected as one of the semifinalists, however, you will need to legally form a company before you can accept the award.

Does the program take any equity in my company?

No. Even if your company wins the Competition, the program does not own any stake in your company.

What kind of video is required for the application video submission?

We are looking for a short (35 minute) video presentation in which you introduce your company, briefly explain your technology, and outline how it addresses needs of an identified market. Ideally we’d like to see a few simple slides with narration. Focus on content – we won’t be assessing production value or presentation style.

If you have trouble making a Powerpoint narration, you can view this instructional video.

If you send a powerpoint file, please ensure the narration is embedded. Otherwise, please send an mp4 file.

Contact: Please direct any inquiries regarding the Berkeley Cleantech University Prize (CUP) to info@beci.berkeley.edu.