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The Public Value Award

 Start-ups make society

Many start-ups are built on ideas that touch on socially relevant topics. The entrepreneurs want to use their powers of innovation and their energy to play their part in mastering current and future challenges and to make a real contribution to society. They demonstrate what entrepreneurship can do for social-ecological transformation and how businesses can shape the future.

The Public Value Award for Start-ups is given to young companies who are concerned with the common good. Our aim is to so encourage young entrepreneurs to actively engage in shaping social values and to grow their individual public value profiles.

The assessment for the award uses the academically-rooted Public Value Scorecard which rates the start-ups in five equally weighted categories – task fulfillment, quality of life, social cohesion, morality, and profitability. The start-ups' contribution to the common good is a combination of these five dimensions.

Our participants see themselves as social entrepreneurs, sustainable entrepreneurs, or simply as entrepreneurs taking on social challenges. They focus on aspects like social impact, sustainability goals and other topics of public value.

What contribution does your business model, your product, your service make to the common good? What is your start-up doing to make society?

By applying for the award, you'll find out more about the social impact of your business model and you'll give your purpose a more clearly defined profile - for investors, customers, staff, and for yourself.

It doesn't matter what industry you're in, how large your company is or what legal form it has. The award is all about the contribution to the common good - the PUBLIC VALUE of your start-up.



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Questions and answers about the PUBLIC VALUE AWARD.


The application alone is worth it. The evaluation of your start-up from a social perspective can show you new growth potential. The contribution that your company makes to the common good (public value) is not only important for society, your customers or your employees, it is also increasingly a decision-making criterion for investors.

All start-ups that make it through to the final receive intensive public value coaching prior to the award ceremony, which helps them to recognize and focus on their own contribution to the common good.

As an award winner or finalist, you become part of our public value network: together with our partners, we want to support your start-up as best we can on its journey from purpose to public value. In addition , you will receive further mentoring and consulting services from our partners of up to 50 hours - on the topics that are next for you. you decide.  

You will also have the opportunity to have solutions for your strategic challenges developed as part of an HHL entrepreneurship seminar.
Above all, you benefit from access to an ecosystem of science and business. You will receive a membership in Forum Gemeinwohl eV, a network of scientists, entrepreneurs and consultants that promotes the idea of the common good in science, business and civil society.

We're always working to offer prizes that help your startup grow.

Further prize offers can be added or content can be specified before the award ceremony.


The Trophy

The unique trophy made of solid concrete and precious metal symbolizes the interaction between the start-up's public value orientation and society. It was designed in 2016 by three graduates of the renowned Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design Halle/Saale - Matthias Zänsler, Oliver Reinecke and Michael Krenz and has been handcrafted by the designers since then.

The foot of the narrow trophy is round - it stands for the big picture, the circle of society. It changes shape towards the top, runs towards the Pentagon and thus becomes the image of the pentagonal Public Value Scorecard. The inside of the trophy is hollowed out. Here the change of form proceeds in a reciprocal manner, playfully referring to the interrelationship between society and the five values of the scorecard. The floor is made of metal (audience prize: wood). The five public value dimensions of task fulfillment, morale, quality of life, cohesion and profitability are engraved into these as the foundation for the success of the winning start-ups.

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