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Pilot 2017 Innovation Challenge Takes Off

LAS VEGAS—What is an unconventional way broadcasters and other local media could serve communities? That is the question posed to interested participants for the NAB’s second annual Pilot Innovation Challenge.

The Pilot Innovations Challenge seeks to recognize creative ideas that leverage technological advances in the production, distribution and display of engaging content and subsequently provides support to the winning entries for development.

Applicants will be required to submit a title, descriptions of their proposed concept, illustration and a business case explaining the concept’s viability. The submission must address the challenge question and will be evaluated based on its creativity, value proposition it holds for both broadcasters and consumers, and its viability. Judges will be made up of local broadcasters, academics, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs and other media-related entities.

This is expected to be the first of two challenges from the Pilot initiative over the next two years that will focus on uncovering local projects that serve the needs of communities. These challenges are supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation with a $200,000 investment. In addition, NAB and Pilot is expected to build a network of broadcast news innovators who can provide guidance, support and industry exposure to winners.

The call for entries is now open, with an application deadline of Sept. 22. NAB will announce the 2017 Pilot Innovation Challenge during the NAB Futures Conference in Palo Alto, Calif., from Nov. 12-14.

For more information on the program, visit