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5 reasons to nominate someone for the TED Prize

Sugata Mitra received $1 million to build the School in the Cloud in 2013 — and today his learning labs are open across India, as well as in the US and UK. Could you nominate the next Prize winner? Photo: James Duncan Davidson/TED

Sugata Mitra received $1 million to build the School in the Cloud in 2013 — and today his learning labs are open across India, as well as in the US and UK. Could you nominate the next Prize winner? Photo: James Duncan Davidson/TED

Who inspires you with their large-scale vision for change? Who offers a bold, unique solution to a global problem — and the capable leadership to make it a reality?

The TED Prize is a $1 million grant, awarded annually to someone who is both a dreamer and a doer. And the best candidates invariably come from you. Perhaps you have a teacher, mentor or colleague in mind — or maybe you’re thinking of someone whose work you’ve admired from afar. Either way, nominate them. Nominations are open on a rolling basis, and many are being reviewed right now. 

In case you still aren’t convinced, here are five reasons to nominate someone for the TED Prize.

  1. Because they just might win! Perhaps it’s an obvious thing to point out, but how proud would you feel if someone you admired professionally got the chance to embark on the project of a lifetime — one with the potential to inspire people and change lives across the globe — all because you took 10 minutes to fill out a nomination form?
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  2. To mobilize the unique TED community. As you may have noticed, TED brings together people like no other. The TED Prize is an opportunity to spread an inspired project to the extensive community of TED attendees, TEDx organizers, TED translators and other contributors — plus the millions who visit TED.com every day. The TED Prize isn’t just seed money toward a wish to inspire the world, it’s a chance to work with the very special people already involved in TED.
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  3. Because TED Prize wishes can have a ripple effect. Even the biggest dreamers can’t predict all the changes that their work may bring about. For every carefully planned action taken to realize a TED Prize wish, there’s an unexpected reaction. This story about José Abreu’s wish shows how the Prize can set off a chain reaction. Who knows what your nominee’s wish could do?
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  4. Because a million dollars can go a long way. In today’s world of billions and trillions, one million dollars can feel like small change in the face of big global problems. But with the TED Prize, that million goes a long way — thanks to the resources and support of the TED community. Coupled with a naturally motivated, enthusiastic Prize winner, our resources help take that one million to even greater heights.
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  5. Because even if they don’t win, you’ll help inform future Prize wishes. TED Prize wishes of yore have assumed the imaginative goals of contacting extraterrestrialsstarting a food revolution, and making the world a more compassionate place. If you nominate someone, at a minimum, you’ll be showing the TED Prize team what type of wish matters to you and what type of thinker, leader or doer you think should be honored  – and help this community decide who to add to this impressive list.

Want to nominate the person floating in the back of your mind as you read this post? Nominate someone for the 2017 TED Prize »

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Note: This post originally ran in June of 2013. It was updated on January 4, 2016.