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Community Energy Innovation Prize (CEIP)

Federal Agency


Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Office of Economic Impact and Diversity (ED), Office of Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO)


To support ongoing and/or proposed activities related to climate and clean energy that support, build trust, and strengthen relationships and partnerships with disadvantaged communities. Specifically, this prize seeks to enable and enhance business and technology incubation, acceleration, and other community-based and university-based entrepreneurship and innovation in climate and clean energy technologies.

Applicant and/or Project Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility for the "Clean Energy Ecosystem" and "Manufacturing Ecosystem" tracks include private entities, states, counties, tribes, municipalities, academic institutions, and individuals. For the "Collegiate Track", teams must be made up of an academic institution, eligible students, and a community partner that meets the requirements as detailed in the official prize rules. Within each track, there are three phases participants can compete in.

Decarbonization Considerations

This prize is intended to enable clean energy and climate innovation, and to create/increase participation in clean energy and climate-smart jobs. Workforce training could cover identifying energy efficiencies and greenhouse gas inventories, renewable energy manufacturing, and deployment. Prizes will help identify and fund activities that will help disadvantaged communities become aware of, apply to, or otherwise secure DOE funding (or other federal, state, local government, private, or non-profit funding.

Equity Considerations

In accordance with the Justice40 initiative, the goals of the Community Energy Innovation Prize support capacity building, innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic development related to clean energy and climate for disadvantaged communities in the following areas: 1. Academic Programs: Enable clean energy and climate innovation, and entrepreneurship programming and capabilities at colleges and universities that serve large populations of students underrepresented in STEM, Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), community colleges, and undergraduate institutions. 2. Workforce Development: Create or increase participation in clean energy and climate-smart job training and job placement/hiring, including programs that target participation from disadvantaged communities, formerly incarcerated individuals/returning citizens, and youth transitioning out of foster care. 3. Clean Energy Technology: Foster grassroots innovation ecosystems and/or deployments related to a just and equitable clean energy economy through activities focusing on community-centric networks and bottom-up solutions for sustainable development, based on the needs of the communities involved.

Helpful Tips

Successful organizations will not necessarily need to have expertise in “deep tech” support and incubation and/or in working with large research institutions but should demonstrate strong community ties and serve as bridges between DOE and innovators with whom DOE has not previously engaged. Additionally, DOE seeks to support clean energy grassroots innovation from disciplines beyond science and engineering. This may include siting, financing, and community ownership of clean energy and climate solutions at the local or state level.

Other Notes

See the HeroX platform for additional details and competition rules: This competition is the successor to the Community Clean Energy Coalition Prize and the Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize. Previous winners of the Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize competition can be found here:

Deadline (Announced or Anticipated)

November 3, 2023 (Collegiate Track); February 2, 2024 (Clean Energy Ecosystem & Manufacturing Ecosystem Tracks)

Funding Available


Max Award Amount


Expected Allocations


Average Award (Estimated)


Matching Funds

Not required

Go to Program Website