Share Your Climate Change Solution: Announcing the 2012 TED Prize Winner – The City 2.0

TED is pleased to announce the winner of the 2012 TED Prize.

For the first time in the history of the prize, it is being awarded not to an individual, but to an idea. It is an idea upon which our planet’s future depends.

The 2012 TED Prize is awarded to….the City 2.0.

The City 2.0 is the city of the future… a future in which more than ten billion people on planet Earth must somehow live sustainably.

The City 2.0 is not a sterile utopian dream, but a real-world upgrade tapping into humanity’s collective wisdom.

The City 2.0 promotes innovation, education, culture, and economic opportunity.

The City 2.0 reduces the carbon footprint of its occupants, facilitates smaller families, and eases the environmental pressure on the world’s rural areas.

The City 2.0 is a place of beauty, wonder, excitement, inclusion, diversity, life.

The City 2.0 is the city that works.

The TED Prize grants its winner $100,000 and “one wish to change the world.”   How will this prize be accepted on behalf of the City 2.0? Through visionary individuals around the world who are advocating on its behalf.

We are listening to them and giving them the opportunity to collectively craft a wish. A wish capable of igniting a massive collaborative project among the members of the global TED community, and indeed all who care about our planet’s future.  (Individuals or organizations who wish to contribute their ideas to a TED Prize wish on behalf of The City 2.0 should write to

The wish will be unveiled on February 29, 2012 at the TED Conference in Long Beach, California. On a Leap Year date, we have a chance, collectively, to take a giant leap forward.

Sign up in the sidebar (under Stay Informed) to get news and updates about the TED Prize and watching the unveiling live this coming February.

Join us for a conversation on the new winner. Tell us what you would wish for on behalf of the City 2.0


Why is TED awarding the 2012 TED Prize to an idea and not a person?

Because this idea is capable of inspiring millions of people around the world to contribute to one of the biggest challenges and opportunities humanity faces.

That has always been the purpose of the TED Prize – to inspire action.  In the past we’ve entrusted individuals to do this.

But the future of cities is such a significant issue, with so many individuals, organizations and companies doing spectacular work, which is why the TED Prize chose not to single out one individual, but honor the idea itself.

Is this a permanent change – to focus on ideas?


Actually the Prize has always been focused on ideas. Since its inception in 2005, the Prize has sought out individuals with the ideas best able to change the world.

We will continue to do this… and each year TED looks forward to surprising people in its selection of one remarkable person – or one remarkable idea – that merits a world-changing wish.

Who will make and oversee this year’s TED Prize wish?


The TED Prize organizing team is bringing together a group of visionaries — urban planners, architects, technologists, authors, policy makers, and economists — to act as advocates for The City 2.0 and craft a wish capable of inspiring collaborative action by many.  The wish will be unveiled during the TED Prize session on February 29, 2012.

How will the annual $100,000 be used?


In the past, the TED Prize winner received $100,000 without any conditions on how it could be used. Most often, the winner either reinvested the money into the wish or into his or her foundation. This year, the money will be invested directly in seeding the Wish to be made on behalf of The City 2.0.