Rules and Regulations

237Proteus Innovation Competition

Context and Aims

The Proteus Innovation Competition (hereinafter the “Competition”) is a 4-month feasibility challenge open to any individual over the age of 18. Contestants are encouraged to form teams around 1 of 5 technologies and work together to win 1 of 5 cash prizes. Successful teams could also be given the opportunity to licence the technology and form a company, subject to legal review and the formation of a mutually beneficial and reasonable agreement on the technology’s institution agreement template.

The aim of Proteus is to demonstrate that commercialization is at the core of taking an innovation from bench top to market. Proteus and its partners would like to highlight the importance of commercialization and promote some of our greatest local creators. We are also seeking to raise public awareness of the commercialization challenges some of our current innovations face. Our hope is that the community at large will come together and, through this competition, provide a means to move many of our technologies that reside in our research intensive institutions, further up the value chain and into the market place. Concrete potential outcomes include new employment opportunities, improvements in people’s lives, and wealth creation that will be reciprocated throughout our region.

Innovation Selection Criteria

The 5 innovations within the competition were selected based on the following criteria:

  1. They are innovative technologies from a variety of industries that solve a problem;
    2. They are commercialization ready or close to it; and
    3. The creators are willing to take part in the contest and are supportive of its process.


The Contest Rules were first filed on October 16, 2015 with the office of WORLDiscoveries®, 100 Collip Circle, Suite 105, London, ON, Canada, N6G 4X8. The Competition organizers have the right to modify all or part of the Contest Rules at any time and for any reason without incurring any liability.


There are several potential prizes that could be awarded:

$5,000 CDN cash to the team which performs best overall for each technology

$1000 CDN for the audience choice award

* In kind prizes to support start up operations will also be given if the team proceeds with licensing the technology and forming a start up company.

The Competition organizers are not obliged to actually award any prizes and could do so only if deemed reasonable by said organizers. The Competition organizers do not guarantee that participants in the Competition will actually receive a prize. Winner selection and award is at the sole discretion of the Competition organizers.

How To Enter

Visit and follow instructions to sign up to enter the Proteus Innovation Competition.

Article 1. Organizer

The organizer of the contest is PROTEUS, a working group made up of The University of Western Ontario, WORLDiscoveries, Western Entrepreneurship and TechAlliance members (“the Competition organizers”).

Article 2. Object of the contest

To complete the three tasks and collect the highest overall points: abstract 20%, business plan 40%, and pitch competition 40% for a total of 100%. The team that scores the highest in each technology could win $5,000 CDN cash. Teams may be eliminated after each round according to the terms and conditions outlined below.

Article 3. Eligibility and entry requirements

  • The contest is open to the public.
  • Participants may only join one team.
  • Participants must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Teams will be required to elect a team captain or team representative who will act as a contact point with the Competition organizers.
  • Participants authorize the Competition organizers to contact them via email (your email will not be disclosed to third parties).
  • Late abstract and commercialization plan submissions will not be accepted or extended.
  • Failure to submit either the abstract or commercialization plan will lead to the automatic disqualification of the entire team.
  • A participating team who makes it to the Pitch competition stage must take part in the Pitch in order to be eligible to receive any money or prize award.
  • The Competition organizers will not engage in, nor will be held responsible for, managing internal team disputes. Any and all disputes or disagreements between or among team participants must be resolved by said participants themselves, acting reasonably.
  • Team names containing vulgar, explicit or inappropriate content (collectively “Offensive Content”) will lead to the immediate dismissal of the entire team from the Proteus event. The Competition participants agree that the Competition organizers, in their sole discretion, will determine what constitutes Offensive Content and will not incur any liability for said determination.
  • Contest Rules and the conduct of the contest may change at any time and from time to time at the sole discretion of the Competition organizers. The Competition participants agree that the Competition organizers, in their sole discretion, will determine when a rule change is appropriate and will not incur any liability for said determination.
  • If a team is dismissed from Proteus, the members of the dismissed team will not be permitted to re-enter the competition on different teams. All decisions of the Competition organizers will be final.
  • Limitations of participants – the following people may not enter the Competition: (a) employees of the Competition organizers, of any company that they control, that controls them or that is under joint control with them, and their immediate family members, (b) people who have been involved in organizing the Competition, and their immediate family members, (c) people who have a conflict of interest or may be perceived to have a conflict of interest (especially interns and apprentices still working for the participants or employees of the same organizations as the judges) and (d) with respect to a given Competition technology, any inventors of that specific technology (albeit, the inventors of a specific Competition technology may compete with respect to another Competition technology on which they have not made an inventive contribution).
  • Scores rendered by the judges will not be disclosed to the Competition participants.
  • Judges’ decisions are final and are not subject to review.

Article 4. Submission deadline

The contest starts on November 15, 2023 and the deadline for entries is January 12, 2024 at 11:59 p.m.

Prizes could be awarded on March 27, 2024.

The Competition organizers reserve the right, in the event of force majeure or for any reason that is beyond their control, to modify the contest dates, and will not be liable in this regard.

Article 5. How to enter

To enter the Competition, complete the online form located at:

Any entry form that is incomplete or that contains inaccuracies will not be processed and will result in the automatic disqualification of the team in question.

Entrants are required to compete using their true identities. The Competition organizers reserve the right to carry out all checks that may be necessary in this regard.

Entrants must compete in teams made up of at least one individual. The constitution of the team shall only be considered definitive on completion of the registration phase. During this phase (from November 15, 2023 to January 12, 2024) it will be possible to change the members of the team. Once this phase has been completed, no more changes will be accepted. If, however, a member decides to leave the team after this phase, the team can remain in Competition if it has one or more members.

Each team must appoint a representative leader. The leader will be the main point of contact with Proteus. The leader must act as a coordinator with the other team members and personally handle the use and possible division of their member’s personal time and financial participation in the project expenses (if any). Proteus will not be liable for any claims in this regard.

Entry in the contest implies the unreserved acceptance of these Contest Rules in full, along with any applicable laws, regulations or other legislation applicable in Ontario, Canada.

The Competition organizers shall not be bound to return the entries presented, once the Competition is over.

Article 6. Contest procedure

The selection process is as follows:
Phase 1: Call for entries and registration phase 
During the call for team formation, and following the announcement of the launch (through the press, Internet site, social networks, emails), the Competition organizers will inform the public of the Competition through their own and their school/university outlets.

The public will be invited to form teams made up of as many people as they choose and register via the Internet site Teams must be submitted no later than the due date of the abstract listed on the competition outline.

During this phase, the teams may modify the content of their entries, whether this involves the team members, or the chosen technology.

The specifications defined by the Competition organizers for this phase will be put online at

Decisions made by the Competition organizers during the registration phase are absolute and final, and no claims or challenges about its decisions may be made by Competition participants. Teams will also be asked to include any potential conflicts of interest a member of the team may have in terms of their relationship to any of the Competition organizers or inventors of the technologies. It will be at the sole discretion of the Competition organizers to remove any teams due to conflict of interest. Teams may be disqualified at any time for not disclosing during the registration phase their conflict of interest.

Phase 2: Competition 


The pitch is the final stage of the Competition. Competitors who make it to this round will have to deliver a pitch on March 27, 2024. In preparation for the pitch, teams may submit slides to by 11:59 p.m. on the date listed on the competition outline. If teams do not submit slides by this time, it will be assumed that no slides will be part of the pitch. To view pitch requirements please click here.

Format Requirements

  • Time limit: 5 minutes
  • PowerPoint Slides allowed
  • 1 Team member minimum

Submission Requirements (in no particular order)

  1. Describe the technology
  2. What is the problem you are solving?
  3. Market strategy
  4. Competitive analysis
  5. About the Team

Article 7. Grant

The team, if any, awarded the first prize, in accordance with the criteria set by Proteus, will be given the amount of five thousand dollars (CDN $5,000), divided equally among all of the team members, by bank transfer. There is no guarantee that any prizes will be awarded even if Competition participants have invested money into preparing Competition entries or submissions. The Competition organizers have the desire and means to actually award the aforementioned prizes but will only do so if the Competition organizers deem, in good faith and in their sole discretion, that such is warranted upon the conclusion of the Competition.

In the event of a tie, the prize money could be awarded proportionately between or among the tying teams. By way of example, in the event of two teams tying for first place, the amount of five thousand (CDN$5,000) would be divided equally among the members of the two teams, i.e., two thousand five hundred (CDN$2,500) for each team.

Article 8. Intellectual property rights

All intellectual property rights in all presentations and submissions will be automatically transferred and assigned in full, free of charge, to The University of Western Ontario for its sole and exclusive use upon submission of the application. Winning teams will have the option to initiate licensing discussions for their technology with WORLDiscoveries, the business development arm of The University of Western Ontario. Notwithstanding the foregoing, WORLDiscoveries will have the right to enter commercialization discussions with any third party and may use any of the content generated during the Competition to assist in its commercialization efforts. There is no guarantee that the parties will actually execute a license or other agreement.

Article 9. Publicity and Image Rights

Throughout the Competition, Proteus will issue communications vis a vis the identity of the teams and the progress of their projects. Accordingly, the teams undertake to provide biographical details and photographs requested by Proteus and agree to these being published on and on its social network accounts as part of the communication campaign for the contest, until the end of 2024.

The winners expressly agree to the free usage and publication of this data on any media and for any advertising or promotional campaign related to this contest.

All of the nominative information that the entrants provide when registering or during the contest is intended solely for Proteus, which may share it internally and transfer it to its technical service providers and organizers.

Article 10. Cancellation – modification

The Competition organizers reserve the right to cancel or postpone the Competition for any reason and at any time. These Contest Rules may be modified by the Competition organizers without notice during the course of the contest. In this event, participants will be informed on the Internet site

Article 11. Limitation of liability

The Competition organizers, including The University of Western Ontario and TechAlliance, WORLDiscoveries, Propel members, shall, under no circumstances, be held liable for defectiveness of any reception equipment or lines of communication; the loss of any paper or electronic mail and, more generally, the loss of any data; forwarding problems; the consequences of any virus, computer bug, anomaly, technical defect; and/or any damage caused to any participant’s computer.

Participants are reminded of the limits of the Internet network, especially with regard to technical performances, response times for consulting or transferring information, the overloading of the network and the risks of contamination by virus. The Competition organizers will not be held responsible for any damage caused to participants, to their IT equipment and their data stored thereon as well as for any consequences that may arise therefrom on the results of the participants in the context or their personal or professional activities. It is incumbent upon Competition participants to take all appropriate steps in order to protect their own data and/or software stored on their IT equipment against any form of hacking. Connection to the Internet site and participation of the participants in the Competition is carried out under their sole responsibility.

Article 12. Applicable law – jurisdiction clause

These Contest Rules and the conduct of the Competition will be exclusively construed, interpreted and enforced pursuant to the laws and courts of the Province of Ontario.

Article 13. Confidentiality

Participants in the Competition undertake not to disclose any information about the content of their projects before the announcement of the winners. Teams may need access to confidential information on the technologies in order to better complete their business plans. If this need arises, participants will be required to sign confidentiality forms prior to sharing of any confidential information to ensure that as participants in the contest they do not publicly disclose said information and only use it for the purposes of the contest.

Article 14. Contacts

Candidates may send in questions at any time to

Article 15. Hosting

The Proteus Innovation Competition website ( is hosted by WORLDiscoveries, 100 Collip Circle, Suite 105, London, ON, Canada, N6G 4X8.