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Challenge The SUDEP Institute Challenge: Empowering People with Epilepsy
The SUDEP Institute Challenge: Empowering People with Epilepsy
STATUS: Awarded
Active Solvers: 337
Posted: Jun 09 2015
Challenge ID: 9933717
Team Project Rooms are available on this Challenge. Team Team Project Rooms are available on this Challenge Team Share Challenge Share

Sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) is the leading cause of death in young adults who have epilepsy and cannot control their seizures. Each year, more than 1 out of 1,000 people with epilepsy die from SUDEP, and, if seizures are uncontrolled, the risk increases to more than 1 out of 150. 

A widespread lack of awareness and ongoing fear and discrimination lead too many individuals to hide their epilepsy and to accept ongoing seizures instead of seeking out more effective treatments. This increases their risk of SUDEP. 

The Epilepsy Foundation SUDEP Institute is determined to change this and is challenging Solvers to come up with ideas for a creative advocacy campaign that encourages people with seizures and epilepsy to seek optimal seizure control and to educate themselves and their families about SUDEP and how they can mitigate its risks. In addition, the campaign should invite the broader health care community to talk about SUDEP, understand the importance of not accepting ongoing seizures, and pursue all effective treatment options. 

Can you help us to demystify seizures and epilepsy, and empower people with epilepsy? 

This is an Ideation Challenge with a guaranteed award for at least one submitted solution.


Nearly 3 million people in the United States and 65 million people worldwide have epilepsy, making it one of the most common neurological diseases globally. One in 26 people will develop epilepsy at some point in their lifetime. Nearly 80% of the people with epilepsy live in low- and middle-income countries. About three-fourths of people with epilepsy living in low- and middle- income countries do not get the treatment they need. 

Among those living with epilepsy, nearly one-third are not able to control their seizures with existing therapies. Each year, more than 1 out of 1,000 people with epilepsy die from sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP). If seizures are uncontrolled, the risk of SUDEP increases to more than 1 out of 150. Although rare in children, SUDEP is the leading cause of death in young adults with uncontrolled seizures. 

Despite the Epilepsy Foundation’s efforts to raise awareness and fight discrimination against people who have seizures and epilepsy, public fear and misperceptions persist. As a result, many people with epilepsy do not disclose their condition and the general public remains unaware of its prevalence and the facts about the condition. The reluctance that people with seizures and epilepsy often have toward talking about it inhibits their ability to seek the best treatment, understand the risks of their condition, and take steps to mitigate those risks. In addition, many people with epilepsy get their care from an emergency room or general practitioner who may not be aware of the latest treatment options and the risks associated with uncontrolled seizures. 

The causes of SUDEP are unknown, but what is known is that by having as few convulsive or tonic-clonic seizures as possible, a person can reduce his or her risk of SUDEP. Hence, with this Challenge, the Epilepsy Foundation is seeking ideas for an advocacy campaign that encourages people to seek optimal seizure control, educates them and their families about SUDEP and how they can mitigate its risk, and invites the health care community to talk about SUDEP and keep exploring new treatment options. 

This is an Ideation Challenge, which has the following unique features:

  • There is a guaranteed award. The awards will be paid to the best submission(s) as solely determined by the Seeker. The total payout will be $15,000, with at least one award being no smaller than $7,500 and no award being smaller than $2,500.
  • Submission forwarding occurs during the Challenge. Since submissions will be forwarded to the Seeker throughout the Challenge, please make sure you upload only a finished proposal. You can submit an updated version of your proposal only as a new submission. If you submit an updated version of your proposal, please clearly indicate the new items and/or edits compared to your previous submission. This will allow the Seeker to quickly find the new information and determine how it improves your submission.
  • The Solvers are not required to transfer exclusive intellectual property rights to the Seeker. Rather, by submitting a proposal, the Solvers grants to the Seeker a royalty-free, perpetual, and non-exclusive license to use any information included in this proposal.

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on July 13, 2015. Late submissions will not be considered.  

After the Challenge deadline, the Seeker will complete the review process and make a decision with regards to the Winning Solution(s). All Solvers that submitted a proposal will be notified on the status of their submissions; however, no detailed evaluation of individual submissions will be provided


This challenge is driven by the Epilepsy Foundation SUDEP Institute. The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is to stop seizures and sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP), find a cure, and overcome the challenges created by epilepsy through efforts including education, advocacy, and research to accelerate ideas into therapies. 

The Epilepsy Foundation, a national non-profit with more than 50 affiliated organizations throughout the United States, has led the fight against epilepsy since 1968. The Foundation is an unwavering ally for individuals and families impacted by epilepsy and seizures. The Foundation works to prevent, control, and cure epilepsy through community services; public education; federal and local advocacy; and supporting research into new treatments and therapies. The Foundation works to ensure that people with epilepsy have the opportunity to live to their fullest potential. 

The SUDEP Institute is an initiative led by the Epilepsy Foundation that carries out SUDEP education and awareness programs for people affected by epilepsy and medical professionals; drives and supports research into the causes of and ways to prevent SUDEP; offers a support network providing counseling, community, and resources for individuals and families affected by SUDEP; and works together with many epilepsy organizations to find answers to SUDEP. 

What is InnoCentive?
InnoCentive is the global innovation marketplace where creative minds solve some of the world's most important problems for cash awards up to $1 million. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with InnoCentive to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is an InnoCentive Ideation™ Challenge?

An InnoCentive Ideation™ Challenge is a broad question formulated to obtain access to new ideas, similar to a global brainstorm for producing a breakthrough idea or market survey which may include ideas for a new product line, a new commercial application for a current product, or even a viral marketing idea to recruit new customers. Ideation™ Challenge submissions are typically about two written pages, and Seekers receive a non-exclusive, perpetual license to use all submissions.

In an Ideation™ Challenge, Solvers may:

  • Submit ideas of their own
  • Submit third party information that they have the right to use and further the authority to convey that right and the right to use and develop derivative works to Seekers
  • Submit information considered in the public domain without any limitations on use

Solvers should not reveal any confidential information in their submissions. Often the Ideation™ Challenge will be followed by one or more of the other three Challenge types to further develop the ideas and gain Intellectual Property protection when the concept has been well-defined.

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