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Information for Applicants - Falling Walls Lab New Zealand - 10 September 2018

Information about Falling Walls Lab New Zealand 2018 (including Pacific Island Forum Nations)

Falling Walls Lab is a challenging, inspiring and interdisciplinary format for outstanding talents, innovators, and high potentials with ground-breaking ideas. In 3-minute talks, participants have the opportunity to share their research projects, business models or social initiatives relevant to the world today to their peers, the interested public and a distinguished jury - promoting ideas and fostering interdisciplinary networks. 

The event is inspired by the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989, with the question of every Falling Walls gathering being: Which walls will fall next? All disciplines are welcome: from engineering, social sciences, natural sciences and economics to the liberal arts or any other discipline.

Falling Walls Labs are held at locations across the globe and the winners from each Lab are invited to the Falling Walls Lab finale in Berlin on the 08 November. Falling Walls Lab is run by the Falling Walls Foundation.


Royal Society Te Apārangi, in collaboration with the German Embassy in Wellington1, invites applications from New Zealand and Pacific Island Forum (PIF) nation academics, entrepreneurs, students and professionals from all disciplines to participate in Falling Walls Lab New Zealand.

  • WHEN: Monday 10 September 2018 in Wellington
  • WHO:  Up to 20 New Zealand-based applicants and up to two PIF nation-based applicants will be selected to take part in the event
  • MORE INFORMATION: Falling Wall Lab FAQ

Why participate in a Falling Walls Lab

The Falling Walls Lab:

  • Provides participants with networking opportunities amongst like-minded individuals
  • Celebrates and promotes outstanding talents in academia and the innovation sector
  • Strengthens links between research and development across academia and businesses

The New Zealand event additionally aims to foster collaboration and knowledge sharing across the South Pacific region


New Zealand based finalist will receive a contribution of up to NZ$ 200 towards expenses for return flights to Wellington (if applicable).

PIF nation based finalists will receive return flights from their place of residence to Wellington plus two night’s accommodation in Wellington.

Lunch and a closing reception is provided for finalists and guests at the September 10 event. Additional expenses for meals, accommodation (in addition to what has been discussed above), visa applications, insurance cover (where applicable) and other costs are the responsibility of the finalists.

The winner of the Falling Walls Lab New Zealand will be invited to the Falling Walls Lab finale in Berlin on November 8, 2018, and additionally receives a ticket to the Falling Walls Conference on November 9. The award includes return economy flights from place of residence to Berlin and four night’s accommodation in Berlin (includes one nights accommodation covered by Falling Walls Lab Berlin).

Application Deadline

Applications to take part in Falling Walls Lab New Zealand must be submitted by 5pm Friday 22 June 2018 (NZST). Applicants will be notified of the outcome in early August.

For eligibility criteria and information on how to apply for Falling Walls Lab New Zealand

Assessment of applications and presentations

Applications to attend the Falling Walls Lab New Zealand are assessed by a diverse evaluation panel with representation from both academia and business. 

In assessing the applications submitted, the panel will consider applicants’ motivation for participating in the event, the breakthrough factor of the proposed idea, and the relevance/impact of the idea for the target group. The panel will additionally ensure that applicants are being assessed in relation to their opportunities. In making its final decisions, the panel may also take into consideration the gender mix, organisational representation, and fields of research represented by the selected finalist.

At the Falling Walls Lab New Zealand event, a Jury with representation from both academia and business will judge the presentations.  Presentations will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Breakthrough Factor (how innovative is the proposed idea)
  • Relevance/Impact (how relevant is the idea for the discipline and beyond, and what is the likely impact)
  • Structure/Performance of the presentation (how convincing was the presentation?)


Only complete and eligible applications will be considered.

A list of Evaluation Panel and Jury members will be available below when the appointment process has been completed.

 [1] This program is additionally supported by the Royal Society Te Apārangi's Early Career Researcher Forum, the German–New Zealand Chamber of Commerce and the Falling Walls Foundation.


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