Institute for Informatics (I2) and the Healthcare Innovation Lab (the Lab) are pleased to announce the first Big Ideas competition for the Washington University School of Medicine and BJC HealthCare communities.

The intent of the program is to support innovative projects that are clinically relevant, rigorously evaluated, and operationally sustainable.

The Big Ideas competition provides an opportunity for collaborative clinical, operational, and research teams to develop innovations in informatics and healthcare delivery.

Investigators may request up to $50,000.

Get Inspired

The intent of this competition is to support innovative projects that are clinically relevant, rigorously evaluated and operationally sustainable. Applications should explain how their proposed project speaks to these characteristics. Successful proposals could, for example, reflect the following strategies:

  • Using personalized health data to inform/optimize care. 
  • Moving healthcare delivery closer to where patients live, work, and play.
  • Harnessing community data to improve community health.

Some examples of successful project ideas might include: 

  • Evaluating the clinical and financial impact of predictive algorithms for detecting patients at-risk of developing sepsis and using such insights to proactively intervene with those individuals before they deteriorate. 
  • Assessing the utility of wearable devices for the remote monitoring of patients in a peri-operative contexts in order to reduce complications and/or readmissions. 
  • Testing the usability and clinical impact of voice assistants in home-care settings in order to deliver behavioral health interventions.

Build Your Team

The competition encourages applications from all individuals affiliated with BJC HealthCare and/or the Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM), with a preference for projects that involve collaboration across the two organizations. The Lab and I2 administrations are happy to help facilitate connections between BJC and WUSM partners, if needed.

  • High impact proposals that do not involve multiple sites or organizations will also be considered for funding.
  • For research fellows or trainees, the mentor (faculty member) must submit the application as the primary investigator. Please describe within the application the trainee-mentor circumstance.
  • Primary investigators/project leads may hold only one innovation award at a time and total awarded funds may not exceed $50,000 within a 12-month period. (PIs may serve as team members on multiple teams.)
  • Proposals should include at least three members in good standing in order to be considered. An example of a successful team could be: a clinician, a research investigator, and an operational champion.
  • The proposal should highlight how funding will be used to advance healthcare delivery.

Dates and Deadlines

DECEMBER 13, 2019

Letters of intent are due


Notification of teams to submit full applications

FEBRUARY 27, 2020

Pitch Event/ “Shark Tank”

MARCH 6, 2020

Full applications are due


Winning Teams will be informed

APRIL 10, 2020

Public Announcement of Winning Teams at I2 Symposium

JULY 1, 2020

2020 Teams Cycle Officially Begins


Midpoint Check-in With Teams

JUNE 30, 2021

2020 Teams Cycle Ends


Letters of intent to apply are due no later than December 13, 2019. Please submit letters to

Accepted intent proposals will be invited to apply.


For more information or to ask questions, please contact us at