HopkinsLocal Idea Lab Challenge Rules

HopkinsLocal, the economic inclusion program of Johns Hopkins University and Health System, is using the IdeaLab platform to seek innovative ideas to help increase economic opportunities in Baltimore City. The rules for the Addressing Economic Inequality Challenge and the Sharing Our Progress Challenge are specific to this HopkinsLocal round of the Idea Lab, and differ in some ways from rules for previous Johns Hopkins Idea Lab challenges.


All Baltimore City residents and all students, faculty and staff from Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Health System are eligible to participate in this lab.

During the submissions period, the Lab moderator will review ideas before posting to ensure that they comply with the rules of the lab. Among the questions you may want to ask – and that we may ask you – as you are developing an idea are:

  • Can my idea actually be implemented?
  • Is there a project similar to this that is already happening at Johns Hopkins or in Baltimore? If so, think about how the project could be a collaboration or how you could differentiate the project.
  • Are there any people, programs, or entities at Johns Hopkins that should be included as team members or partners for the project? Are there any people, programs, or entities not affiliated with Johns Hopkins that should be included as team members or partners?
If you have questions, don't hesitate to contact us!


This challenge is open for the submission of ideas 30 days after its launch.


As the largest private anchor institution for Baltimore City, Johns Hopkins—including Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Health System—embraces our role as an economic engine to create lasting opportunities in our city. To this end, Johns Hopkins launched HopkinsLocal in 2015 with defined goals to BUY, BUILD and HIRE locally. After 3 successful years (to link the most recent report), Hopkins is launching this lab to gather ideas from as large a group as possible, to "crowdsource" new and innovate ideas to address economic inequality in Baltimore City. While Johns Hopkins is committed to this work, it is also true, that Johns Hopkins alone, can only accomplish so much. To this point, ideas will be evaluated against the following criteria:

  • Salience: Does the proposal address the challenge in a relevant and meaningful way?
  • Impact: Would the proposal make a measurable impact on the issue? In Baltimore City?
  • Innovation: Does the proposal offer an innovative or unique approach?
  • Feasibility: Can the proposal be implemented with current resources, and if successful, can it be continued or scaled following its initial implementation?

While all ideas will be reviewed, not all ideas will be implemented.


At the end of the review period, a report will be published documenting the diversity of proposals submitted. The report will also feature next steps on how Hopkins will follow-through on some of these ideas and work to implement them.

A supporting event may also be held in conjunction with the report release.