2021 Open Ideo Food Systems Game Changers Lab

Deadline: May 14, 2021.

This is a call to action for those with hands in the soil, pans on the stove, and everyone in between to help transform the planet.

The United Nations Secretary-General is hosting the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit to spearhead transformation of our world’s food systems to work for people, planet, and prosperity. The event will push beyond the bounds of food and agriculture to include solutions that take into account environment, health, climate, economy, human rights, and more. In the UN’s words, this is a “solutions summit that will require everyone to take action”—and the UN Food Systems Summit is engaging directly with diverse communities around the world to bring their ideas to the table. They also call it “a people’s summit.” 

The Food Systems Game Changers Lab is a multi-phase program conceptualized by EAT, IDEO, Thought for Food, The Rockefeller Foundation, and other collaborators who support the UN Food Systems Summit. Phase 1, the Global Open Call, is hosted by IDEO and seeks people who have ideas, initiatives, or innovations that have the potential to bring positive change to global food systems—and the passion, grit, collaborative spirit, and determination required to take their solutions forward in partnership with others.


  1. This is a purposefully open invitation. We’re casting the net wide to capture ideas at every stage, of any scale, from around the world.
  2. All answers on the submission form must be provided in English. 
  3. They’re looking for individuals, teams, and organizations who have ideas, innovations, or initiatives that could contribute to a better food future for everyone, everywhere.
  4. They’re looking for people who think systemically about feasible actions, which can be sustained over time and would shift the capacity of food systems to advance global goals for people, planet, and prosperity. 
  5. They’re also looking for people who have the passion, grit, collaborative spirit, and determination required to take their solutions forward in partnership with others. 


  1. The Food Systems Game Changers Lab: Global Open Call opens the doors for you to join a global community of food systems solvers, and be part of a movement. 
  2. If selected for the Food Systems Game Changers Lab, you’ll gain access to the knowledge and experience of people like you, eager to advance solutions to food systems challenges—and have the opportunity to bring your solutions to the global stage. 
  3. You’ll gain access to customized curricula that will help you build partnerships, deepen your systems mindset, and monitor systems change efforts.

Being selected for Phase 2 of the Food Systems Game Changers Lab directly following this Global Open Call gives you access to:

  • Tailored mentorship and expertise 
  • Others with similar solution types (e.g., digital technology, financial innovation, behavior change)
  • Others with similar impact goals (e.g., improved diets)
  • Systems thinking curricula, tools, and experts
  • Inclusion in a flagship publication 


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