Frequently Asked Questions
Is there documentation on AHRQ's planning process that you hope this Challenge will help inform?
Currently, AHRQ does not have such information. AHRQ is in the exploratory phase of this work, and AHRQ is hoping that the Challenge results will better inform this work.
Are groups and universities eligible?
Yes, participants can be individuals or groups.
Can you define what is considered public data, and is anything acceptable online?
Public data is anything that is accessible to AHRQ and all other applicants who may apply to the Challenge. This would include data on websites or anything that can be secured through an open process.
Do you have an example of the type of tool that AHRQ is asking for in this Challenge?
No, but there are visualization prototypes that other national entities use, such as the Commonwealth or the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. But AHRQ is not looking to replicate existing prototypes, but rather the development of an innovative prototype.
Do you allow multiscreen visualizations?
Does the tool specifically apply to a web-based application?
No, other mediums are okay.
Are there specific requirements on the fidelity and sophistication of the prototypes?
AHRQ is looking for prototypes that leverage technology and are as innovative as possible. It cannot be proprietary or a "black box."
Who are the intended audiences for this tool?
This is meant to help a wide range of entities/individuals including policymakers, public health officials, researchers, advocates, and providers of social servies, as examples.
What is the Phase 2 money for?
This is prize money rather than a contract and grant for development of services.
What is the geographical area for data being visualized (national, State, local)?
All of the above, but the more localized level, the better.
Will AHRQ be using crowdsourcing for implementation of the platform, as NASA does?
At this time, there are no plans to do so.
Does the prototype need to be functional or a wireframe?
Either. The focus should be on innovation.
How is this different from AHRQ's recent grant announcement (Data Analytics to Promote Primary Care and Community Interventions to Improve Chronic Disease Prevention and Population Health Management)?
The grant is intended to establish a data infrastructure mechanism around social determinants of health for the long term. This is to focus on current data sets out there that can be leveraged and connect together. For this Challenge, AHRQ is looking at creativity in how these data are being graphically displayed.
What are the criteria for the video submission?
It must be 3 minutes or less and loaded up into a web-based format for accessing. A video upload is not acceptable.
The Challenge focuses on a visualization tool, but you also refer to statistical methods. Do applicants need to do statistical analysis?
The Challnege focus is on data visualization. However, it is important to include more than one factor in your visualization. The applicant can decide how many factors and how complicated the prototype is.
Where do I upload my submission?
Participants can submit their applications through this Web portal. They may select “Submission Requirements/Registration” https://cma.ahrq.gov/cma/registration.jsp?eventid=77 any time during the submission period. If an application is submitted multiple times, AHRQ will review the application that was submitted at the latest time/date.
Where do I submit budget information? Are there limits to the budget, such as indirect rates?
Challenges are different than grants and contracts. No budget needs to be submitted. There is a set prize award. However, there are no restrictions on how the prize award is spent.
Can an individual receive the prize money?
Yes, if they are a U.S. citizen or have permanent residency. It is important to note that there would be tax implications in receiving the prize.
Can I compete in Phase 2 of the Challenges if I didn’t apply or win Phase 1?
No. The Challenge is structured so that Phase 2 builds upon the success from Phase 1. Only Phase 1 semi-finalists may participate in Phase 2.
Can I apply with an existing product?
While the submission requirements for this Challenge allows for the use of an existing solution as a part of a participant’s entry, there still needs to be clear innovation. Solvers will need to show they did not simply apply an existing solution without its modification, enhancement, or augmentation. The purpose of the Challenge is to drive innovation, so there has to be a clearly innovative offering in your submission for it to successfully compete.
I receive Federal grants or contracts. Can I still apply?
That depends. Federal grantees may not use Federal funds to develop COMPETES Act Challenge applications unless consistent with the purpose of their grant award. Federal contractors may not use Federal funds from a contract to develop COMPETES Act Challenge applications or to fund efforts in support of a COMPETES Act Challenge submission.
How will prizes be awarded for Phase 1?
Following the Phase 1 close date, compliant submissions will be reviewed according to the Phase 1 selection criteria by the Challenge’s Expert Advisors. Based on advisor feedback, AHRQ management will choose the winning submissions that move on to Phase 2.
Can I maximize my odds for winning a Phase 1 prize by providing multiple submissions?
Multiple submissions are allowed, but each one must be a unique approach, sufficiently differentiated, and in compliance with the Challenge Requirements. Only one prize may be awarded per team.
Do I retain intellectual property ownership?
Each entrant retains title and full ownership in and to their submission. Entrants expressly reserve all intellectual property rights not expressly granted under the Challenge agreement. By participating in the Challenge, each entrant hereby irrevocably grants to AHRQ a limited, non-exclusive, royalty-free, worldwide license and right to reproduce, publicly perform, publicly display, and use the submission to the extent necessary to administer the Challenge, and to publicly perform and publicly display the submission, including, without limitation, for advertising and promotional purposes relating to the Challenge.
Additionally, the grand prize winner will be required to post an open source version of the application’s code on the GitHub source code repository, made publicly available under the Creative Commons license, CCO 1.0 Universal (CCO 1.0, Public Domain Dedication). For a summary and full text of the CCO 1.0 Universal License, go to https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/ the GitHub source code repository is accessible at https://github.com.
What potential benefits do I get from making a submission to one of the Challenges?
In addition to the Prize award for the winning applications, winning solvers get expert validation of their solution and benefit from promotion efforts which may expand their exposure to a wide audience of potential users.
Can more than one person work on a submission and receive credit? And if the submission wins, will the prize money be split among the solvers?
Yes, more than one individual is permitted to complete a submission package during both phases of the Challenge. Team members are solely responsible for allocating the value of services, awards, or prizes.
Who can I contact if I have questions?
Please email the logistics contractor, Susan Kerin with Capital Consulting Corporation, at email@example.com. In fairness to all potential contestants, we may post the answer to your question(s) online on our FAQ page.