October 2020
Chattanooga, TN

The GIG City Innovation Challenge is a 48-hour competition for college students from across the nation. Teams will have the opportunity to develop and present approaches to solve a real world challenge presented by national leaders in the energy space. These innovative companies are looking for new ideas to help reshape the energy economy and improve adoption of renewable energy sources in communities across the U.S.


1st Place:


2nd Place:


3rd Place:



Chattanooga—known as the Scenic City due to its beauty and outdoor recreational scene—has grown to become a thriving new hub for startups and large companies alike. With a supportive ecosystem for businesses, the Chattanooga region has emerged as a leader in the new energy economy. With a 100% fiber optic network as its backbone, our next-generation Smart Grid, operated by EPB, is the most advanced power distribution grid of its kind. The Chattanooga innovation district also hosts TVA, the largest public electricity provider in the country, attracting both world class talent and an increasing number of companies in the energy sector.

Here’s what leaders are saying about Chattanooga.

“Between EPB, with one of the most advanced smart grids in the world, and the operational center of the TVA serving 10 million people in seven states, Chattanooga is an ideal sandbox for innovation in the energy space. In the past decade, we have reduced our carbon footprint by 25.2% even with 14.3% more people and 44.8% GDP growth. But, we also have some of the greatest challenges ensuring that the most vulnerable communities are not left behind as the energy industry rapidly evolves over the next decade.”

— Michael Walton, Executive Director, green|spaces




Sept. 28 – Oct. 11: Application Period
Oct. 16 @ 3 PM: Challenge Case Released to Selected Teams
Oct. 18 @ 3PM: Submissions Due (4-minute video)
Oct. 20: Semifinalists Announced
Oct. 23: Pitch Event and Winner Announcement